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Report: Trimble/Boss/Jones excluded
31 Aug 2015 22:10
It's being reported this evening that Andrew Trimble, Isaac Boss and Felix Jones have all missed out on selection for Ireland's final 31-man squad for the Rugby World Cup.
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The Irish Independent and The42.ie are both reporting that Ireland's 2014 player of the year, Trimble, is expected to be the most high-profile casualty in the squad.
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The Ulster winger has only played once in the last 12 months, against Wales, in this month's 35-12 victory in Cardiff, due to a foot injury.
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A flare-up of the same injury meant Trimble only played 33 minutes of that tie and it's believed that he has failed to recover in time to make the 31.
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Also, in the back division, it's thought that Leinster's Boss misses out at scrum-half, with head coach Joe Schmidt going for just two scrum-halves in Conor Murray and Eoin Reddan. Connacht's Kieran Marmion, as anticipated, also misses out.
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This extra space would appear to have freed up space for Ulster's Darren Cave to come into the side as cover at first centre for Robbie Henshaw - a move few expected Schmidt to make. Ulster's Jared Payne is expected to be named as Ireland's third outright centre. Veteran centre Gordon D'Arcy is omitted.
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In the hotly contested back three division, along with Trimble’s exclusion, Munster’s Jones, Leinster’s Fergus McFadden and Ulster's Craig Gilroy have reportedly failed to make the squad. Tommy Bowe, Simon Zebo, Keith Earls, Luke Fitzgerald and Dave Kearney are all included leaving Zebo, Earls, Fitzgerald and also Payne as possible full-back cover.
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Up front, Cian Healy is included, despite not having played yet this season as he continues to recover from neck surgery. The Ireland management appear to have gambled on the loosehead recovering match fitness in the coming weeks.
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This means Munster's Dave Kilcoyne misses out as Jack McGrath is named as the other loosehead.
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Leinster's Tadhg Furlong, who only made his debut as a replacement for Ireland against Wales last Saturday, is a surprise inclusion, offering support at tighthead with Mike Ross and Nathan White ahead of him in the pecking order. Marty Moore’s continuing recovery from a foot injury appears to have kept him out of the 31. Michael Bent, who can play both prop positions, appears to have been pipped to the last prop spot by Furlong.
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The rest of the pack is as expected with Rory Best, Sean Cronin and Richardt Strauss named as hookers. Paul O’Connell, Devin Toner, Iain Henderson and Donnacha Ryan are set to be named at lock with Ulster's Dan Tuohy missing out.
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Jamie Heaslip, Sean O’Brien, Peter O’Mahony, Chris Henry and Jordi Murphy are the five back rows, with Jack Conan omitted.
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Similarly the rest of the back division is believed to follow a familiar pattern with Paddy Jackson and Ian Madigan named as back-up out-halves to Jonny Sexton.
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