EOIN REDDAN AND Ronan O’Gara will be given a chance to boost their World Cup credentials on Saturday with both players expected to start against France in Bordeaux.
Declan Kidney will announce his starting XV for Ireland’s second World Cup warm-up test this afternoon and is set to name a much stronger panel than the one which lost to Scotland last weekend.
Donncha O’Callaghan is expected to make his return to international action, possibly alongside Leo Cullen in the second row with Paul O’Connell making an appearance from the bench.
One man who will not feature, however, is Peter Stringer who was released back to Munster ahead of their training camp and pre-season friendly against La Rochelle in France.
In his place, provincial team-mate Conor Murray is set for a first senior call-up as Kidney continues to mull over his options in the fiercely competitive scrum-half position.
Meanwhile, French coach Marc Lièvremont named his side for Saturday’s game last night, handing an international debut to Biarritz star Raphael Lakafia in the back row.
France (v Ireland): Traille; Clerc, Marty, Mermoz, Palisson; Trinh-Duc, Yachvili; Marconnet, Szarzewski, Ducalcon, Pierre, Millo-Chluski, Dusautoir (c), Harinordoquy, Lakafia.