The Ireland squad for next week’s Aga Khan Cup at the Dublin Horseshow has been named.
Bertram Allen, Mark McAuley, Shane Breen, Cian O’Connor and Denis Lynch make up the five-man squad announced by manager Rodrigo Pessoa, which will be trimmed down to four before the competition starts.
The Dublin Horse Show will host the last qualifying round in the FEI Nations Cup Europe Division 1, with the famous Aga Khan trophy up for grabs when teams do battle at the RDS on Friday, 11 August
Ireland finished in fourth place at the last round of the Nations Cup series in Hickstead to all but guarantee a place in the Nations Cup world final in Barcelona at the end of September.
Team manager Rodrigo Pessoa is hoping for another good result in the Aga Khan which comes just two weeks before the start of the European Championships in Gothenburg,
"Obviously Dublin is very important for us. We haven’t won a Nations Cup so far this year. We have been close on a few occasions but if we are to win just one this year our home Nations Cup would be the perfect place to do it," Pessoa said.
Pessoa has fond memories of competing himself at the RDS and is looking forward to leading out his team in Ballsbridge.
"The Dublin Horse Show is very special and the RDS is a historic venue. I last competed there myself in 2010 and it will be an honour and a privilege to lead out the Irish team in front of the home fans but most of all I am hoping I can get my hands on the famous Aga Khan trophy on Friday," he concluded.
Ireland has won the Aga Khan trophy 23 times since it was first awarded in 1926, with Ireland’s last victory coming in 2015.
Rodrigo Pessoa will name his four Aga Khan team members on next week with eight top Nations battling for the Aga Khan Trophy on Friday afternoon live on RTÉ Television.
Ireland Aga Khan Cup Squad:
Bertram Allen with Molly Malone
Mark McAule with Miebello
Shane Breen with Golden Hawk
Cian O’Connor with Good Luck
Denis Lynch with RMF Echo