AS EXPECTED, LEINSTER’S Jamie Heaslip has been named in the Irish side ahead of this weekend’s crucial Six Nations tie against France in the Aviva Stadium.
Heaslip has slotted in at number eight with Sean O’Brien moving to flanker in place of Denis Leamy who is named among the substitutes.
There is no start, however, for Ulster winger Andrew Trimble who came through yesterday’s training session unscathed. Last week’s debutant Fergus McFadden keeps his place on the wing.
Tomas O’Leary, whose position was also the subject of some speculation, starts again at scrum-half.
The Irish starting 15 for Saturday’s game is as follows.
Ireland: 15 Luke Fitzgerald, 14 Fergus McFadden, 13 Brian O’Driscoll (c), 12 Gordon D’Arcy, 11 Keith Earls, 10 Jonathan Sexton, 9 Tomas O’Leary, 8 Jamie Heaslip, 7 David Wallace, 6 Sean O’Brien, 5 Paul O’Connell, 4 Donncha O’Callaghan, 3 Mike Ross, 2 Rory Best, 1 Cian Healy.
French coach Marc Lièvremont announced his own starting side yesterday with Biarritz’s Damien Traille moving to inside-centre while Clément Poitrenaud slots in at full-back.
France: 15 Clément Poitrenaud, 14 Yoann Huget, 13 Aurélien Rougerie, 12 Damien Traille, 11 Maxime Médard, 10 François Trinh-Duc, 9 Morgan Parra, 8 Imanol Harinordoquy, 7 Julien Bonnaire, 6 Thierry Dusautoir (c), 5 Lionel Nallet, 4 Julien Pierre, 3 Nicolas Mas, 2 William Servat, 1 Thomas Domingo
Will that team be good enough to take France in Sunday’s showdown? Would you have preferred to see Reddan and/or Trimble involved from the start this weekend?