The Ireland Under-20 Team, sponsored by PwC, to play their opening game of the RBS 6 Nations against Italy has been named.

Head Coach, Nigel Carolan has named an experienced side with six players from last year’s squad included in the starting XV to play Italy.

Up front, Oisin Heffernan will be joined by Jeremy Loughman and Zack McCall in the front row. David O’Connor and Alex Thompson are named in the second row. Lorcan Dow joins Josh Murphy and Connacht’s Rory Moloney in the back row to complete the pack.

Nick McCarthy will take up the scrum half position and will partner Ross Byrne who has been named at out half. McCarthy will also captain this year’s side.

Gary Ringrose who makes a return to the side from last year, will be joined by Fergal Cleary in the centre. Jack Owen and Greg O’Shea are named on the wing and Billy Dardis takes the full-back position.

Connacht sub Academy players Conan O’Donnell and Cian Romaine, both uncapped at this level, are named amongst the replacements.

Coach, Nigel Carolan said “Any time you play an Italian side it’s a fight, but it’s something players will need to adapt to.”

“To play the opening game away from home is always a challenge, but we are focused and are looking forward to kicking off”.

Ireland Under-20 team & Replacements (v Italy Under-20.  Stadio Pozzi Lamarmora – Kick-off 19.00hrs local, 18.00hrs GMT):

15 – Billy Dardis (UCD/ Leinster)*
14 – Greg O’Shea (Shannon/ Munster)
13 – Garry Ringrose (UCD/ Leinster)*
12 – Fergal Cleary (Lansdowne / Leinster)
11 – Jack Owens (QUB/ Ulster)
10 – Ross Byrne (UCD / Leinster)
9 – Nick McCarthy (UCD/ Leinster) (Capt)*

1 – Jeremy Loughman (UCD / Leinster)
2 – Zack McCall (QUB/Ulster)
3 – Oisin Heffernan (Terenure/Leinster)*
4 – David O’Connor (St. Mary’s/Leinster)
5 – Alex Thompson (QUB/Ulster)
6 – Josh Murphy (UCD/Leinster)*
7 – Rory Moloney (Buccaneers/Connacht)*
8 – Lorcan Dow (QUB/Ulster)


16 – Adam McBurney (Ballymena/Ulster)
17 – Michael Lagan (Ballymena/Ulster)
18 – Conan O’Donnell (Sligo/NUIG/Connacht)
19 – Cian Romaine (Buccaneers/Connacht)
20 – Nick Timoney (St. Mary’s/Leinster)
21 – Jack Cullen (Shannon/Munster)*
22 – Joey Carbery (UCD/Leinster)
23 – Sam Arnold (Ballynahinch/Ulster)

*Denotes previously capped at this level.

RBS 6 Nations Ireland Under-20 Fixtures:

Fri 6 Feb 19:00 (18:00 GMT) Italy U20 v Ireland U20 Stadio Pozzi Lamarmora
Fri 13 Feb 19:05 Ireland U20 v France U20 Dubarry Park
Fri 27 Feb 19:05 Ireland U20 v England U20 Donnybrook
Fri 13 Mar 19:45 Wales U20 v Ireland U20 Parc Eirias
Fri 20 Mar 19:30 Scotland U20 v Ireland U20 Netherdale








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