Shannon's John Foley who will start for Ireland U20s against New Zealand
EIGHT Munster players have been included in the Ireland U-20 side to face New Zealand in their final Pool fixture at the World Rugby U-20 Championships in Kutaisi Stadium, Georgia, this Thursday, 12.30pm Irish time.
Ireland U-20 coach Peter Malone has named four Munster players in the backline, Young Munster’s Alan Tynan at full-back, the Garryowen duo of David McCarthy and Liam Coombes at inside centre and left wing respectively.
McCarthy and Coombes will both earn his first cap for Ireland at this level.
Shannon RFC’s Conor Fitzgerald, who was only called into the squad as an injury replacement on Monday, will start at out-half.
The Ireland U-20s pack features four more Munster players. UL-Bohemian prop Joey Conway returns to the starting line-up, where he is joined by Shannon hooker Adam Moloney and flanker John Foley, while Young Munster’s Gavin Coombes starts in the second row.
Fineen Wycherley, of Young Munster, and Jack Stafford, of Shannon, are listed among the replacements for the game.
Ireland U-20s have lost their opening two pool fixtures against Italy and Scotland.
Head coach Malone said: "It's been a difficult opening to the tournament for the team, but we have a young side and while everyone is disappointed that the results haven't gone our way so far, the players will have gained a lot from those two games.
“There's more players gaining their first U20s caps tomorrow so it gives them the opportunity to show what they can do in an Ireland jersey.
New Zealand have looked impressive in their opening games against Scotland and Italy so we will need to take the learnings from our opening games and be ready for a huge test tomorrow.”
The match will be broadcast live by eir Sport this Thursday.
IRELAND U-20: Alan Tynan (Young Munster/Munster); Michael Silvester (Leinster), Jack Kelly (Leinster) (Captain), David McCarthy (Garryowen/Munster), Liam Coombes (Garryowen/Munster); Conor Fitzgerald (Shannon/Munster), Jonny Stewart ( Ulster); Joey Conway (UL Bohemian/Munster), Adam Moloney (Shannon/Munster), Greg McGrath (Leinster); Gavin Coombes (Young Munster/ Munster), Jack Regan (Leinster); Marcus Rea (Ulster), John Foley (Shannon/Munster), Sean Masterson (Connacht). Replacements: Ronan Kelleher (Leinster), Jordan Duggan (Leinster), Charlie Connolly (Leinster), Fineen Wycherley (Young Munster/Munster), Caelan Doris (Leinster); Jack Stafford (Shannon/Munster), Conor Dean (Leinster), Ciaran Frawley (Leinster)
*Denotes uncapped at this level.