PwC Ireland managing partner, Feargal O'Rourke pictured with (l-r): Diarmuid Barron, Tommy O'Brien, Jonny Stewart and Seán Masterson at the U20s Six Nations squad annoucement at Spencer Dock.
The Ireland rugby squad for the 2018 U20 Six Nations Championship has been announced by head coach Noel McNamara at sponsor PwC Ireland’s offices in Dublin’s Spencer Dock.
The 32-man squad features 11 players who were capped during last season’s U20 Six Nations and World Rugby U20 World Championships.
In the forwards, prop Jordan Duggan, hookers Ronan Kelleher and Diarmuid Barron, along with back-row Sean Masterson all featured last season, as did backs, scrum-half Jonny Stewart, out-half Conor Dean, centres Angus Curtis, David McCarthy and Tommy O’Brien, along with back-three players Mark Keane and Michael Silvester. Tommy O’Brien will captain the side.
On selection of the squad, McNamara said: "It’s an exciting time for the players and the coaching team. There have been some tight calls across the board and it’s great to see that competition for places. Also, with 11 players who were involved last season, there is some good experience across the squad.
The players have all been working hard over the past number of months and we’re confident in the ability of the squad that we have selected.”
Speaking in advance of the 2018 U20 Six Nations, PwC Ireland’s managing partner Feargal O’Rourke said: "As longstanding sponsors of Irish rugby we have built an established and mutually beneficial relationship with the IRFU.
With that in mind, we are excited to kick off this year's Six Nations Championship as we head into our thirteenth year as sponsors of the Irish U20s squad. We are enormously proud to be associated with such a talented and hardworking team and we look forward to supporting them and their coaching staff through the 2018 campaign.
At PwC we take pride in our relentless focus on developing talent and being the 'best that we can be' to ensure the greatest results for our people, our clients and our business partners. We know that Irish Rugby shares the same approach. The acceleration of talent from this grade to the full senior squad has become more pronounced in recent seasons and we look forward to many of the 2018 team making the same jump in the future. We wish the team the very best of luck and the #Futureisgreen."
The Ireland U20s will open their Six Nations campaign against France U20s on Friday, 2 February, at the Stade Amédée Domenech in Brive.
Ireland will play their home games against Italy, Wales and Scotland on Friday nights in Donnybrook Stadium, with the series of home games again being sponsored by Electric Ireland.
Their campaign will conclude with a trip to the Ricoh Arena in Coventry to face England on 16 March, in a double-header with the clash between Ireland and England women’s teams.
Tickets for the Ireland U20s games in Donnybrook are available from ticketmaster.ie
Friday, 2 February 2018
France U20 v Ireland U20, 9pm (local)/8pm (Irish time), Stade Amédée Domenech, Brive
Friday, 9 February 2018
Ireland U20 v Italy U20, 7.15pm, Donnybrook Stadium, Dublin
Friday, 23 February 2018
Ireland U20 v Wales U20, 7.15pm, Donnybrook Stadium, Dublin
Saturday, 9 March 2018
Ireland U20 v Scotland U20, 7.15pm, Donnybrook Stadium, Dublin
Friday, 16 March 2018
England U20 v Ireland U20, 8pm, Ricoh Arena, Coventry
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