Young Irish stars get chance in glamour French tie

IRELAND’S young club stars get an opportunity to test themselves against a visiting French region in Ashbourne, County Meath on Sunday (noon).

The Irish U-18 squad includes four players who helped Ireland reach last year’s European U-18 championship final in Italy — centre David Lynch, centre/wing Andrew Boyle, scrum-half Mark Dolan and flanker Dominic Gallagher.

All four also played in the corresponding fixture against the Languedoc/Rousillon side.

Coach Greg Lynch and manager Willie Gribben yesterday announced an extended squad for the game following the completion of the recent interprovincial play-offs.

The match is the third in a series, with each team having won a game apiece. The Irish management see it as a crucial part of the calendar as they continue their quest to identify players who will represent Ireland in the FIRA-AER European U-18 Championships in France between April 2 and 12.

IRELAND: E Downes (Wicklow/Leinster), J Corscadden (Malone/Ulster), B Howard (Bury St. Edmunds/Exiles), J Sutton (New Ross/Leinster), L Murphy Woolridge (St Olaves School/Exiles), T Furlong (New Ross/Leinster), D Qualter (Buccaneers/Connacht), C Smyth (Coleraine/Ulster), M Kearney (Clontarf/Leinster), G Crowe (Ennis/Munster), C Burke (London Wasps/Exiles), A Conneely (Corinthians/Connacht), D Gallagher (Lisburn/Ulster), E McKeon (Galwegians/Connacht), K Marmion (Christ College/Exiles), M Dolan (Buccaneers/Connacht), J Carty (Buccaneers/Connacht), G Connon (Carlisle/Exiles), J Holland (Sundays Well/Munster), P Dean (DLSP/Leinster), C Learhem (Banbridge/Ulster), D Lynch (Naas/Leinster), L O’Keefe (London Wasps/Exiles), S Collins (Ennis/Munster), A Boyle (St. Brigid’s/Leinster), C Boland (Buccaneers/Connacht).

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