Munster quartet in Ireland side to face All-Blacks

Colm Kinsella, Rugby Correspondent


Colm Kinsella, Rugby Correspondent

Munster quartet in Ireland side to face All-Blacks

FOUR Munster players have again been included in Ireland’s starting line-up to face New Zealand in the autumn international series at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday, 5.30pm.

Backs Simon Zebo and Conor Murray and forwards Donnacha Ryan and CJ Stander are again included in Joe Schmidt’s side to face the World Champions this weekend.

All four players started Ireland’s historic first ever win over the All-Blacks in Soldier Field, Chicago earlier this month.

Limerick native Sean Cronin, of Leinster, is listed among the replacements for Saturday’s game at Lansdowne Road.

There is, however, no place in the match-day squad for Munster skipper Peter O’Mahony, also a recent returnee from long-term injury. The forward was unable to train fully last Monday and judged not ready for selection. 

Munster winger Keith Earls also misses out with a dead leg. 

The only change to Ireland’s starting line-up from the side which defeated New Zealand in Chicago is the inclusion of Sean O’Brien in the back-row instead of the injured Jordi Murphy. 

IRELAND: Rob Kearney, Andrew Trimble, Rob Henshaw, Jared Payne, Simon Zebo, Johnny Sexton, Conor Murray; Jack McGrath, Rory Best (capt), Tadhg Furlong, Devin Toner, Donnacha Ryan, CJ Stander, Sean O’Brien, Jamie Heaslip. Replacements: Sean Cronin, Cian Healy, Finlay Bealham, Iain Henderson, Josh van der Flier, Kieran Marmion, Paddy Jackson, Garry Ringrose.

NEW ZEALAND: Ben Smith, Israel Dagg, Malakai Fekitoa, Anton Lienert-Brown, Julian Savea, Beauden Barrett, Aaron Smith; Owen Franks, Dane Coles, Joe Moody; Sam Whitelock, Brodie Retallick; Sam Cane, Liam Squire, Kieran Read (captain). Replacements: Codie Taylor, Wyatt Crockett, Charlie Faumuina, Scott Barrett, Ardie Savea, TJ Perenara, Aaron Cruden, Waisake Naholo.