Connect with us

6 Nations

Ireland Team Named For Bank Of Ireland Nations Series Opener Against World Champions

Published

on

The Ireland coaching team have named the Match Day 23 to take on reigning world champions South Africa in the opening fixture of the Bank of Ireland Nations Series at Aviva Stadium on Saturday (Kick-off 5.30pm, live on Virgin Media and Amazon Prime).

Conor Murray is set to earn his 100th cap for Ireland and is one of just five players in the starting team that started the last game between the two sides in 2017. Tadhg Furlong, Robbie Henshaw, Peter O’Mahony and Johnny Sexton were the other players to start against the Springbok five years ago.

Cian Healy, who is named on the bench for Saturday’s game, also started the 2017 game while Rob Herring, James Ryan and Joey Carbery were among the replacements that day.

Tadhg Beirne and Jack Conan have never played for Ireland against South Africa but featured against the Springboks for the British and Irish Lions in the 2021 Test Series. Furlong, Henshaw and Murray also played in that Test Series.

Finlay Bealham has experience of playing the Boks as he was a replacement in the second Test against South Africa in Johannesburg on the 2016 Tour.

Whereas Robert Baloucoune, Caelan Doris, Jamison Gibson Park, Mack Hansen, Hugo Keenan, Stuart McCloskey, Andrew Porter, Garry Ringrose, Dan Sheehan, Kieran Treadwell and Josh van der Flier have never faced South Africa at senior level.

Baloucoune missed the Summer Tour of New Zealand through injury but started against both the Griquas and the Cheetahs for Emerging Ireland last month.

Ireland captain Sexton will make his 109th appearance for Ireland this Saturday, becoming the country’s fifth most capped player of all time pushing current Forwards Coach Paul O’Connell into sixth position.

Nathan Doak, Tom Stewart and Stewart Moore have now joined the extended squad.

IRELAND v South Africa:

15. Hugo Keenan (Leinster/UCD) 23 caps
14. Robert Baloucoune (Ulster/Enniskillen) 2 caps
13. Garry Ringrose (Leinster/UCD) 44 caps
12.Robbie Henshaw (Leinster/Buccaneers) 60 caps
11. Mack Hansen (Connacht) 6 caps
10. Johnny Sexton (Leinster/St Mary’s College) 108 caps CAPTAIN
9. Conor Murray (Munster/Garryowen) 99 caps

1. Andrew Porter (Leinster/UCD) 46 caps
2. Dan Sheehan (Leinster/Lansdowne) 10 caps
3. Tadhg Furlong (Leinster/Clontarf) 60 caps
4. Tadhg Beirne (Munster/Lansdowne) 33 caps
5. James Ryan (Leinster/UCD) 46 caps
6. Peter O’Mahony (Munster/Cork Constitution) 87 caps
7. Josh van der Flier (Leinster/UCD) 43 caps
8. Caelan Doris (Leinster/St Mary’s College) 20 caps

Replacements:

16. Rob Herring (Ulster/Ballynahinch) 28 caps
17. Cian Healy (Leinster/Clontarf) 118 caps
18. Finlay Bealham (Connacht/Buccaneers) 25 caps
19. Kieran Treadwell (Ulster/Ballymena) 8 caps
20. Jack Conan (Leinster/Old Belvedere) 30 caps
21. Jamison Gibson Park (Leinster) 20 caps
22. Joey Carbery (Munster/Clontarf) 35 caps
23. Stuart McCloskey (Ulster/Bangor) 6 caps.

Images & Content from Irish Rugby & Images © Inpho Photography


6 Nations

Jones officially sacked by RFU

Published

on

The Rugby Football Union (RFU) will now conclude the long-term work it has been undertaking on coach succession planning with changes set to be announced in the near future. In the interim, Richard Cockerill will take over the day to day running of the men’s performance team.

“It is important to recognise the huge contribution Eddie has made to English rugby, winning three Six Nations Championships, one Grand Slam and taking us to a Rugby World Cup Final,” said RFU CEO, Bill Sweeney.

“He has the highest win ratio of any previous England head coach and has helped develop the leadership skills of many players and coaches. I am grateful to Eddie for all he has done for England across many areas of the game and the professional way in which he has approached reviewing the performance of the team. He has provided the panel with astute insight and meaningful lessons that will support the team performance going forward.”

During his time in charge Jones steered England to three Six Nations titles, including a Grand Slam in 2016, two series wins in Australia, an unbeaten run of 18 matches, an Autumn Nations Cup, and a Rugby World Cup final in Japan.

“I am pleased with much that we have achieved as an England team and I look forward to watching the team’s performance in the future,” said Jones. “Many of the players and I will no doubt keep in touch and I wish them all well in their future careers.”

The decision for Eddie to leave was taken by the RFU board earlier today. Speaking about the decision, RFU Chair, Tom Ilube said: “The independent review panel regularly updates board on its discussions and findings. We are fully supportive of its process and recommendations.”


Images & Content from England Rugby
Continue Reading

6 Nations

Gatland returns as Pivac is sacked

Published

on

Warren Gatland will return to Wales before Christmas to replace incumbent head coach Wayne Pivac.

Welsh Rugby Union (WRU) CEO Steve Phillips has confirmed Gatland will take charge of Wales for the 2023 Guinness Six Nations and at the 2023 Rugby World Cup in France, with the ability to go through the next World Cup cycle up to and including Australia 2027.

Wales’ most successful and longest serving coach is back to take over from fellow New Zealander Pivac, who has agreed to part company with the WRU after the official 2022 Autumn Nations Series review was completed and approved by the WRU Board.

.

“This is one of the toughest calls to make in sport, but the review process has reached its conclusion and we have acted quickly and efficiently in the very best interests of our national team,” said Phillips.

“Ultimately we are in the results business and we have agreed with Wayne that the current trajectory for Wales is not where we want it to be and we thank him sincerely for his time, enthusiasm, diligence and effort, which is unquestioned, as head coach over the last three years.”

Gatland leaves Super Rugby side the Chiefs to return, after formerly serving Wales over a 12-year period. He completed his first Six Nations clean sweep in his debut season with Cymru in 2008, before repeating the feat in 2012 and finishing on the same high to win the 2019 tournament.

“In Warren we are bringing in one of the very best coaches in the international game,” continued Phillips.

“We were sorry to see him go when he left and we are delighted that he has agreed to return.

“We know him well and, most importantly, he knows us well too. We are extremely excited about this latest chapter for Wales-and-Warren-Gatland and I know the feeling is mutual.

“He will undoubtedly be able to make an immediate impact, just as he did when he joined us for the first time in 2008. But it has also been important to both parties to ensure we get absolute maximum gain out of the return of such an experienced and highly regarded individual.

“It is for this reason that we are particularly pleased to have been able to secure Warren’s services for the next few years with the ability to go to the 2027 Rugby World Cup.

“This appointment is no quick fix, nor sticking plaster, it is part of our long term planning for the game in Wales.

“We have been able to take swift action in difficult circumstances and that is testament to the good grace and professionalism of Wayne and the efficiency of our review process.”

Native New Zealander Gatland, who took charge of two successful British & Irish Lions tours during his time with Wales, was also in charge for three Rugby World Cups, reaching the semi-final stages on two occasions (2011 and 2019) and took Wales to the top of World Rugby’s rankings – for the first time – by virtue of a record 14-match unbeaten run during his final season.

“I’m very much looking forward to returning to coach Wales,” said Gatland

“This is an opportunity to achieve something with a talented group of players in a country so passionate about rugby. A country which made my family and I so welcome, when we first arrived fifteen years ago, and all the time we were there.

“Our immediate priority is obviously the 2023 Guinness Six Nations and next year’s Rugby World Cup.

“There is little time for sentiment, professional sport is all about preparation, values and results. There will be new challenges as there always is with a change in head coach, but for me the environment, the players and their families will always come first.

“We must prepare to the best of our ability in the time available. We will value and respect each other, we will work hard and, if we get this right together, performances and results will follow.”

The WRU and New Zealand Rugby have reached agreement for Warren Gatland to be released from his existing contract with immediate effect.

“Warren Gatland is Wales’ most successful coach, overseeing a period in which we won three Grand Slams and reached the very top of World Rugby’s rankings for the first time in the history of those records,” added recently appointed WRU chair Ieuan Evans

“We are delighted he has agreed to return to us. We will of course need to afford him time and ensure he has the tools at his disposal to rekindle the success he has achieved with Wales during his previous tenure, but we are all very excited about the future.

“I would like to add my sincere gratitude to Wayne. He has given much of himself over the last three years, including leading Wales to the Six Nations Championship title in 2021 and we are extremely grateful to him for his dedication to the role.”

Wayne Pivac said: “I am obviously extremely sad to stand down from the role.
“It was a speedy review process post-Autumn Nations Series as time is of the essence with the Six Nations fast approaching. Unfortunately, the results or performances this year were not all as we hoped. As a group we all take responsibility for that, but me in particular as head coach.

“We have played some really good rugby at times, but needed to do that more consistently. However, I know that there is a strong foundation for the squad to progress to great things in the future.

“I would like to thank the players, coaches, management and the WRU for their commitment, support and hard work in my time as head coach and to all the people in Wales for making me feel at home here over the past eight years.”

Images & Content – Wales Rugby


Continue Reading

6 Nations

Ireland’s TikTok Women’s Six Nations Home Games To Be Played At Musgrave Park

Published

on

Ireland’s home matches in the 2023 TikTok Women’s Six Nations will be played at Musgrave Park.

The Cork venue has been the home of the Ireland U20s since 2019 and has become a real fortress in recent seasons, with Ireland Women also enjoying huge support there when they defeated Italy at Musgrave Park in last year’s Six Nations.

Greg McWilliams‘ side open their 2023 Championship against Wales in Cardiff on Saturday, 25th March (2.15pm) before welcoming France to Cork in Round 2 on Saturday, 1st April (3.15pm). After a rest weekend, Ireland will be on the road again, going head-to-head with Italy in Parma on Saturday, 15th April (4.45pm).

World Cup finalists England will visit Musgrave Park in Round 4 on Saturday, 22nd April (2.15pm) and the Championship will conclude with a trip to Edinburgh to take on Scotland at the DAM Health Stadium on Saturday, 29th April (7.30pm).

“We received huge home support during last year’s Six Nations and we’re excited to make Cork our home base for the 2023 Championship,” McWilliams said. “We enjoyed a good day out against Italy last year, with the people of Cork coming out to support the team and we will be hoping for more of the same in 2023, as two of the best teams in women’s rugby come to visit.”

Ticket details for Ireland’s home matches at Musgrave Park will be announced in due course.

TikTok Women’s Six Nations Fixtures 2023:

  • Wales v Ireland, Saturday 25 March, Cardiff Arms Park, 2.15pm
  • Ireland v France, Saturday 1 April, Musgrave Park, 3.15pm
  • Italy v Ireland, Saturday 15 April, Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi, 4.45pm
  • Ireland v England, Saturday 22 April, Musgrave Park, 2.15pm
  • Scotland v Ireland, Saturday 29 April, DAM Health Stadium, 7.30pm.

Images & Content from Irish Rugby & Images © Inpho Photography


Continue Reading
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Trending