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Ryan Byrne/INPHO Ireland head coach Nigel Carolan.
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Cosgrove drafted in by Irish U20s as Gallagher ruled out of semi-final
“We are fortunate to have a good squad and to have lads at home who are ready to step in,” said head coach Nigel Carolan.

MATTHEW COSGRAVE HAS become the latest Sligo player to be drafted into the Irish squad after his clubmate Cillian Gallagher had his participation in the World Rugby U20 Championship ended through injury.

Cosgrove has joined up with the group in Manchester and could be in line to make his debut when Nigel Carolan’s men take on Argentina in the semi-finals of the competition on Monday.

Cosgrove, like Gallagher, is in the Connacht academy system and the 20-year old has been capped at U-18 level.

Gallagher’s worst fears were realised when a scan revealed a shoulder injury would force his return to Ireland today.

He suffered the injury in the 35-7 win over Georgia and is the third Irish player to have his tournament ended early with prop Conor Kenny injured against Wales and out-half Bill Johnston in the win over New Zealand.

Gallagher, who won’t be 19 for another few months, will be underage next year when the tournament is held in Georgia.

Coach Carolan, who will hope on Monday to guide them into their first U20 final in the nine-year history of the championship, said it was disappointing for Gallagher.

“It’s always disappointing for a player to have to leave early but, unfortunately, it’s part and parcel of the demands of the tournament.

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“We are fortunate to have a good squad and to have lads at home who are ready to step in,” said Carolan.

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