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Dublin: 9°C Tuesday 18 May 2021
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Kleyn primed for Ireland debut, Carbery takes 10 shirt for Italy warm-up

Munster’s Mike Haley is also set for his first international cap as he takes up a spot among the replacements.

MUNSTER SECOND ROW Jean Kleyn is set to make his international rugby debut for Ireland when Joe Schmidt’s side begin their Rugby World Cup warm-up schedule against Italy at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday (kick-off 2pm).

The South African lock is newly-qualified for Ireland under the three-year residency rule having moved to Munster after being granted early release from his Western Province contract during the summer of 2016.

Joey Carbery and Jean Kleyn Kleyn and Carbery embrace in Ireland training. Source: Billy Stickland/INPHO

The powerful, hard-hitting 25-year-old stands a real chance of breaking into the final 31-man squad for the trip to Japan next month, but first must begin impressing in a green shirt. Kleyn is partnered in the engine room by Devin Toner. Both Iain Henderson and Tadhg Beirne are among the replacements, so James Ryan is among the 20 remaining wider squad members left in cold storage for this weekend’s curtain-raiser.

Joey Carbery takes the reins at out-half on what will be his 19th cap, but just a sixth starting in the out-half role. He is partnered by Luke McGrath, back in green for the first time since the November win over USA.

Jordan Larmour starts at fullback with Andrew Conway and Dave Kearney – who is set for his first Test involvement since November 2017 – complete the back three, while Mike Haley could make it two Munster debutantes as he sits alongside Jack Carty and Kieran Marmion as the replacement backs.

Garry Ringrose and Chris Farrell make up a strong centre partnership. The back row is made up of Rhys Ruddock, Jordi Murphy and Tommy O’Donnell – whose last cap came during the 2016 Six Nations.

Rob Herring starts at hooker ahead of Niall Scannell and Sean Cronin. Jack McGrath and Andrew Porter get a chance to impress as starting props with Cian Healy and John Ryan in reserve.

Ireland (2019 RWC warm-up v Italy)

15. Jordan Larmour
14. Andrew Conway
13. Garry Ringrose
12. Chris Farrell
11. Dave Kearney
10. Joey Carbery
9. Luke McGrath

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1. Jack McGrath
2. Rob Herring
3. Andrew Porter
4. Devin Toner
5. Jean Kleyn
6. Rhys Ruddock (Capt)
7. Tommy O’Donnell
8. Jordi Murphy

Replacements

16. Niall Scannell
17. Cian Healy
18. John Ryan
19. Iain Henderson
20. Tadhg Beirne
21. Kieran Marmion
22. Jack Carty
23. Mike Haley

About the author:

Sean Farrell

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