Laszlo Geczo/INPHO Leinster out-half Harry Byrne.
the byrne connection
Leinster name Ross and Harry Byrne together in starting team for the first time
Jack Conan will win his 100th cap for the province in Friday’s game with the Dragons.

ROSS AND HARRY Byrne have been named to start in a Leinster team together for the first time ahead of Friday’s Pro14 clash away to the Dragons [7.35, TG4]. 

Leo Cullen has opted to give Ross Byrne another run at centre, naming the older Byrne brother at 12. Ross previously impressed at outside centre in the January win over Ulster. Harry, who joined Andy Farrell’s Ireland squad as injury cover last week, makes his seventh start of the season at out-half.

Max O’Reilly starts at fullback with Cian Kelleher and Dave Kearney named on the wings. Rory O’Loughlin recovers from a shoulder injury to join Ross Byrne in midfield, with Harry Byrne at 10 alongside captain Luke McGrath at scrum-half.

Peter Dooley, James Tracy and Michael Bent form an experienced front-row, with Ross Molony and Ryan Baird getting the nod in the second row.

Jack Conan starts at number eight to win his 100th cap for the province, with Josh Murphy and Scott Penny completing the backrow.

On the bench, loosehead prop Marcus Hanan is in line to make his debut. The 20-year-old came through the age grades at Clane RFC in Kildare and was capped by the Ireland Under 20s during the 2020 Six Nations, and plays his club rugby with Old Belvedere.

Dragons Director of Rugby Dean Ryan hands a full debut to centre Aneurin Owen, while prop Lloyd Fairbrother is set to make his 100th Pro14 appearance.

Leinster head into the game with a four-point advantage over Ulster at the top of Conference A table with five rounds remaining. The province have won their previous eight meetings with the Dragons.


15. Jordan Williams
14. Jonah Holmes
13. Aneurin Owen
12. Jack Dixon
11. Ashton Hewitt
10. Sam Davies
9. Rhodri Williams (captain)

1. Brok Harris
2. Richard Hibbard
3. Lloyd Fairbrother
4. Joe Davies
5. Ben Carter
6. Matthew Screech
7. Ben Fry
8. Huw Taylor

16. Ellis Shipp
17. Greg Bateman
18. Chris Coleman
19. Joe Maksymiw
20. Dan Baker
21. Luke Baldwin
22. Josh Lewis
23. Connor Edwards


15. Max O’Reilly 
14. Cian Kelleher 
13. Rory O’Loughlin
12. Ross Byrne
11. Dave Kearney 
10. Harry Byrne 
9. Luke McGrath (captain) 

1. Peter Dooley 
2. James Tracy
3. Michael Bent 
4. Ross Molony 
5. Ryan Baird 
6. Josh Murphy 
7. Scott Penny 
8. Jack Conan 

16. Dan Sheehan
17. Marcus Hanan
18. Tom Clarkson
19. Devin Toner
20. Scott Fardy
21. Rowan Osborne
22. David Hawkshaw
23. Jamie Osborne

– Originally published at 12:06

Bernard Jackman, Murray Kinsella and Gavan Casey take the fine-tooth comb to Ireland’s defeat to France and get to the bottom of their issues on both sides of the ball:

The42 Rugby Weekly / SoundCloud

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