The Ireland Coaching Group have named the match day 23 that will welcome France to the Aviva Stadium on Saturday for Ireland’s first home game of the 2017 RBS 6 Nations Championship.
Rory Best returns to captain the team after being side-lined in Rome through illness. Jonathan Sexton is also back in the Ireland team this weekend for his first match the 2017 tournament.

Best is joined in the front row by Jack McGrath and Tadhg Furlong. The second row sees Devin Toner and Donnacha Ryan paired once again while Jamie Heaslip, Sean O’Brien and CJ Standerfill the backrow slots to complete the pack.

Conor Murray and Sexton are named at half-back with Robbie Henshaw and Garry Ringrosecontinuing their midfield partnership.

Rob Kearney, Keith Earls and Simon Zebo complete the back three.

The replacements are Niall Scannell, Cian Healy, John Ryan, Iain Henderson, Peter O’Mahony, Kieran Marmion, Paddy Jackson and Andrew Trimble.

Ireland Team & Replacements (v France, RBS 6 Nations, Aviva Stadium, Saturday 25, February, 4:50pm)

15. Rob Kearney (UCD/Leinster) 74 caps
14. Keith Earls (Young Munster/Munster) 56 caps
13. Garry Ringrose (UCD/Leinster) 5 caps
12. Robbie Henshaw (Buccaneers/Leinster) 26 caps
11. Simon Zebo (Cork Constitution/Munster) 30 caps
10. Johnny Sexton (St Mary’s College/Leinster) 63 caps
9. Conor Murray (Garryowen/Munster) 55 caps

1. Jack McGrath (St. Mary’s/Leinster) 38 caps
2. Rory Best (Banbridge/Ulster) c 101 caps
3. Tadhg Furlong (Clontarf/Leinster) 13 caps
4. Donnacha Ryan (Shannon/Munster) 44 caps
5. Devin Toner (Lansdowne/Leinster) 44 caps
6. CJ Stander (Shannon/Munster) 12 caps
7. Sean O’Brien (UCD/Leinster) 46 caps
8. Jamie Heaslip (Dublin University/Leinster) vc 93 caps

Replacements
16. Niall Scannell (Dolphin/Munster) 1 cap
17. Cian Healy (Clontarf/Leinster) 64 caps
18. John Ryan (Cork Constitution/Munster) 3 caps
19. Iain Henderson (Ballynahinch/Ulster) 29 caps
20. Peter O’Mahony (Cork Constitution/Munster) 37 caps
21. Kieran Marmion (Corinthians/Connacht) 10 caps
22. Paddy Jackson (Dungannon/Ulster) 21 caps
23. Andrew Trimble (Ballymena/Ulster) 69 caps

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