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Ireland U20s captain Hawkshaw misses out as Grand Slam bid continues in Cork

The injured centre has been replaced in the team by Sean French for Friday night’s game against France.

IRELAND U20 HEAD COACH Noel McNamara has been forced into making one change to his starting line-up for Friday night’s Six Nations meeting with France at Musgrave Park [7.15pm].

McNamara will be without captain David Hawkshaw for the visit of the French to Cork, after the inside centre was ruled out due to a knee injury.

Rugby Under-20 6 Nations: Italy vs Ireland The Ireland U20 team in a huddle after their win against Italy. Source: Matteo Ciambelli/Inpho

Having scored five tries in two recent Ulster Bank League appearances for Cork Constitution, Sean French has rather aptly been drafted into the Irish midfield instead. UCD’s Charlie Ryan will wear the captain’s armband in the second row.

Dublin University lock Ryan Baird could win his first cap after being included among the replacements, as Ireland aim to move a step closer to a Grand Slam, having picked up their third consecutive win at the expense of Italy a fortnight ago.

“We were pleased to come home from Italy with a bonus-point win, but there are still elements that we feel can be improved on, so it’s about continuing to progress as we move through the tournament,” said head coach Noel McNamara.

“It’s really unfortunate for David Hawkshaw to miss out. He’s been in great form on the pitch and has been a fantastic leader of the side. Everyone wishes him well in his recovery.

“Sean French has done really well in the All-Ireland League over the last few weeks, so we know he has the ability to perform in front of his home crowd in Cork.”

Ireland U20s (v France):

15. Jake Flannery (Shannon/Munster)
14. Angus Kernohan (Queen’s University/Ulster)
13. Liam Turner (Dublin University/Leinster)
12. Sean French (Cork Constitution/Munster)
11. Jonathan Wren (Cork Constitution/Munster)
10. Harry Byrne (Lansdowne/Leinster)
9. Craig Casey (Shannon/Munster)

1. Josh Wycherley (Young Munster/Munster)
2. Dylan Tierney-Martin (Corinthians/Connacht)
3. Thomas Clarkson (Dublin University/Leinster)
4. Charlie Ryan (UCD/Leinster — captain)
5. Niall Murray (Buccaneers/Connacht)
6. Martin Moloney (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
7. Scott Penny (UCD RFC/Leinster)
8. John Hodnett (UCC/Munster)

Replacements:

16. John McKee (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
17. Callum Reid (Banbridge/Ulster)
18. Ryan Lomas (Galwegians/Connacht)
19. Ryan Baird (Dublin University/Leinster)
20. David McCann (Banbridge/Ulster)
21. Cormac Foley (St. Mary’s College/Leinster)
22. Ben Healy (Garryowen/Munster)
23. Rob Russell (Dublin University/Leinster)

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About the author:

Paul Dollery

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