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Conway and Lowe named to start for Ireland, Sheehan to debut off bench

Johnny Sexton captains the team on the occasion of his 100th Ireland cap.

Andrew Conway is on the right wing for Ireland.
Andrew Conway is on the right wing for Ireland.
Image: Bryan Keane/INPHO

IRELAND HEAD COACH Andy Farrell has included Andrew Conway and James Lowe on the wings in his team to face Japan at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday [KO 1pm, RTÉ].

Leinster hooker Rónan Kelleher has won the battle to wear the number two shirt for the Autumn Nations Series clash in Dublin in what is a strong team captained by Johnny Sexton on the occasion of his 100th Ireland cap.

Leinster’s 23-year-old hooker Dan Sheehan is set for his debut off the bench, with Ulster’s Rob Herring missing out on the matchday 23.

Lowe and Conway join Hugo Keenan in the back three, while Bundee Aki and Garry Ringrose team up in midfield with Robbie Henshaw still on the way back from a foot injury.

Out-half Sexton is joined by Leinster team-mate Jamison Gibson-Park in the halfback pairing, with Munster’s Joey Carbery and Conor Murray offering back-up from the bench.

Kelleher is part of an all-Leinster front row along with Tadhg Furlong and Andrew Porter, who starts at loosehead prop after making the switch from tighthead with his province early on this season.

Tadhg Beirne and James Ryan are the second row combination, with Ulster’s Iain Henderson on the bench, while Caelan Doris, Josh van der Flier, and Jack Conan make up a dynamic back row trio.

The Ireland bench includes Peter O’Mahony and Keith Earls. 

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Ireland (v Japan):

  • 15. Hugo Keenan
  • 14. Andrew Conway
  • 13. Garry Ringrose
  • 12. Bundee Aki
  • 11. James Lowe
  • 10. Johnny Sexton (captain)
  • 9. Jamison Gibson-Park
  • 1. Andrew Porter
  • 2. Rónan Kelleher
  • 3. Tadhg Furlong
  • 4. Tadhg Beirne
  • 5. James Ryan
  • 6. Caelan Doris
  • 7. Josh van der Flier
  • 8. Jack Conan

Replacements:

  • 16. Dan Sheehan
  • 17. Cian Healy
  • 18. Finlay Bealham
  • 19. Iain Henderson
  • 20. Peter O’Mahony
  • 21. Conor Murray
  • 22. Joey Carbery
  • 23. Keith Earls

Referee: Nika Amashukeli [GRU].

About the author:

Murray Kinsella

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