McCarthy set for Ireland bow
August 4, 2011
Connacht's Mike McCarthy will partner Niall Ronan and Denis Leamy in a new-look back-row © Getty Images
Flanker Mike McCarthy is set to make his Ireland debut in their Rugby World Cup warm-up clash with Scotland at Murrayfield this Saturday.
The 29-year-old is the only uncapped player named in the squad to tackle the Scots in the first of five warm-up games for Declan Kidney's side although Munster fullback Felix Jones is poised to make his international bow off the bench.
Leinster lock Leo Cullen will lead his country for the first time from the second row where he will partner Munster's Donnacha Ryan. Rob Kearney returns to start the game at fullback for the first time since November having recovered from a knee injury. Fergus McFadden and Paddy Wallace will form a new centre partnership with Andrew Trimble and Luke Fitzgerald named on the wings.
Tom Court, Sean Cronin and Tony Buckley will pack down in the front row while new cap McCarthy will have plenty of experience alongside him with the 50 times capped Denis Leamy starting at No.8 and Niall Ronan starting at open side flanker.
Ireland: Rob Kearney; Andrew Trimble, Fergus McFadden, Paddy Wallace, Luke Fitzgerald; Jonathan Sexton, Tomas O'Leary; Tom Court, Sean Cronin, Tony Buckley, Donnacha Ryan, Leo Cullen (captain), Mike McCarthy, Niall Ronan, Denis Leamy
Replacements: Jerry Flannery, Marcus Horan, John Hayes, Mick O'Driscoll, Kevin McLaughlin, Isaac Boss, Felix Jones
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Firdose Moonda looks at the moves towards greater integration within South African rugby ... and what the future holds
Martin Gillingham looks ahead to what he believes is the most remarkable ever climax to the league phase of the Top 14
With just two rounds left in the regular season, we look at the prospects of the teams taking part in the Championship play-offs
Joe Simpson talks to Charlie Morgan about loss, Wasps and being England's game-breaker