herald

Sunday 22 October 2017

D'Arcy out in the cold, Sexton a doubt and Heaslip fit to return

Gordon D'Arcy is the glaring omission from Ireland's 36-man training squad for Wales.

The Wexford man (left) made his Ireland debut against Romania way back in October of 1999 and has built an international career numbered at 81 caps. The end comes to everyone.

Brian O'Driscoll was the exception to the rule in that he went out on his own terms. It looks like D'Arcy has not been afforded that privilege.

Ireland Team Manager Mick Kearney was able to confirm that it is down to "a selection issue" and that Darren Cave played at inside centre against Argentina last summer, should Robbie Henshaw go down.

The 35 year-old's last Ireland appearance came in the 26-23 victory over Australia last year.

As regards, the well-being of Jonathan Sexton (right), the fly-half continues to make progress from his hamstring strain.

"As a precaution, he will have modified training in the early part of the week with an expectation that he will be train fully towards the end of the week," said Kearney.

"He's hit all his markers so far."

fullt raining

Jamie Heaslip (back) was set to train fully, from yesterday, and Sean O'Brien and Jared Payne "will be reintroduced to full training during the week."

The introduction of thirteen extra players into Ireland Camp will probably have no short-term benefit to the chosen ones.

In the longer term, this will mark the week this campaign's newcomers, Tadhg Furlong, Michael Bent and Dan Tuohy, launch their bids for the World Cup squad.

IRELAND SQUAD

Forwards (20): M Bent*, R Best, S Cronin, T Furlong*, C Healy, J Heaslip*, I Henderson, M McCarthy*, J McGrath, M Moore, J Murphy, S O'Brien, P O'Connell (capt), T O'Donnell, P O'Mahony, M Ross, D Ryan*, R Strauss*, D Toner, D Tuohy*.

Backs (16): I Boss*, T Bowe, D Cave*, K Earls*, L Fitzgerald*, R Henshaw, F Jones, D Kearney*, R Kearney, I Keatley*, I Madigan, C Murray, J Payne, E Reddan, J Sexton, S Zebo.

*Denotes players from outside the 23-man squad against England.

SIX NATIONS

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