McCormick retains place in Ireland Under-20 side

Ballymoney man and Dalriad part of the Irish team taking on France on Friday evening

McCormick retains place in Ireland Under-20 side
By Damian Mullan


By Damian Mullan


Head Coach Richie Murphy has named the Ireland Match Day squad, sponsored by PwC, for Friday’s U20 Six Nations Round 2 clash against France in Aix-en-Provence (Kick-off 8pm Irish time, live on Virgin Media Two).

Murphy has made four changes in personnel to his starting XV from last weekend's bonus point win over Wales in Cork, with Aitzol King, Daniel Hawkshaw, Ethan Coughlan and Rory McGuire coming into the side for the trip to France.

King joins Patrick Campbell and Shane Mallon in the back three, with Hawkshaw partnering Ben Brownlee in midfield. Coughlan, who made his Munster senior debut in the Heineken Champions Cup before Christmas, comes in at scrum-half alongside Charlie Tector at out-half.

There is just one change in the pack with McGuire drafted into the front row alongside Jack Boyle and hooker James McCormick. UCD team-mates Mark Morrissey and Conor O’Tighearnaigh continue in the second row, while Reuben Crothers once again leads the side from an unchanged back row. James McNabney and James Culhane, who was the PwC Player of the Match last Friday, complete the line-up.

Commenting ahead of the game, Murphy said: "We were pleased with the performance and result in Round 1, but we've had to turn the page quickly ahead of a big challenge on Friday night.

"The players acquitted themselves well last week and we have been able to focus on the areas of our game that need refinement this week. There is no greater test than going away to France and the group are excited about that challenge."

Friday's game is live on Virgin Media Two from 7.30pm Irish time.

Ireland U20s (v France):

15. Patrick Campbell (Young Munster RFC/Munster)
14. Aitzol King (Clontarf FC/Leinster)
13. Ben Brownlee (UCD RFC/Leinster)
12. Daniel Hawkshaw (Clontarf FC/Leinster)
11. Shane Mallon (UCD RFC/Leinster)
10. Charlie Tector (Lansdowne FC/Leinster)
9. Ethan Coughlan (Shannon RFC/Munster)

1. Jack Boyle (UCD RFC/Leinster)
2. James McCormick (Ballymena RFC/Ulster)
3. Rory McGuire (UCD/Leinster)
4. Conor O’Tighearnaigh (UCD RFC/Leinster)
5. Mark Morrissey (UCD RFC/Leinster)
6. James McNabney (Ballymena RFC/Ulster)
7. Reuben Crothers (Ballynahinch RFC/Ulster)(capt)
8. James Culhane (UCD RFC/Leinster)


16. Josh Hanlon (Ballynahinch RFC/Ulster)
17. Oisin Michel (Lansdowne FC/Leinster)
18. Darragh McSweeney (Shannon RFC/Munster)
19. Adam McNamee (Malone RFC/Ulster)
20. Conor Moloney (Young Munster RFC/Munster)
21. Matthew Devine (Corinthians RFC/Connacht)
22. Tony Butler (Garryowen FC/Munster)
23. Dylan O'Grady (UCD RFC/Leinster).

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