The Ireland rugby squad of 23 from which the team to play Italy in the Lloyds TSB Six Nations Championship at Lansdowne Road on Saturday, March 23rd (2pm), will be announced on Tuesday next, March 19, is:
Forwards: Shane Byrne (Leinster), Peter Clohessy (Munster), Simon Easterby (Llanelli), Anthony Foley (Munster), John Hayes (Munster), Gary Longwell (Ulster), Eric Miller (Leinster), Paul O’Connell (Munster), Malcolm O’Kelly (Leinster), Frank Sheahan (Munster), David Wallace (Munster), Paul Wallace (Leinster) Keith Wood (Harlequins).
Backs: Girvan Dempsey (Leinster), Guy Easterby (Llanelli), Denis Hickie (Leinster), Shane Horgan (Leinster), Tyrone Howe (Ulster), David Humphreys (Ulster), John Kelly (Munster), Brian O’Driscoll (Leinster), Ronan O’Gara (Munster), Peter Stringer (Munster).
NB 1 - Not considered due to injury: Kevin Maggs (Bath), Geordan Murphy (Leicester), and Rob Henderson (Munster).
NB 2 - The following players will be available to play for their clubs this weekend, if selected: Shane Byrne (Blackrock College), John Hayes (Shannon), John Kelly (Cork Constitution), Gary Longwell (Ballymena), Eric Miller (Terenure College), Ronan O’Gara (Cork Constitution) and Frank Sheahan (Cork Constitution).
NB 3: The Ireland team will be announced at the Glenview Hotel, Delgany at approx 12.30pm on Tuesday next, March 19, following an OPEN training session at Greystones RFC from 11:15 am to 11.45am approx.
Ireland A Squad V. Italy
The Ireland A squad from which the team to play Italy at Donnybrook, on Friday, March 22 (6pm) will be announced on Tuesday next, March 19 (as above) is:
Forwards: Simon Best (Ulster), Bob Casey (Leinster), Reggie Corrigan (Leinster), Victor Costello (Leinster), Leo Cullen (Leinster), Keith Gleeson (Leinster), Gavin Hickie (Leinster), Marcus Horan (Munster), Donnacha O’Callaghan (Munster), A. N. Other, Alan Quinlan (Munster), Andy Ward
Backs: Paul Burke (Harlequins), Justin Bishop (London Irish), Gordon Darcy (Leinster), Neil Doak (Ulster), Jason Holland (Munster), Anthony Horgan (Munster), Mike Mullins (Munster), Brian O'Meara (Leinster), Jeremy Staunton (Munster), Paddy Wallace (Ulster).
The AN Other vacancy in the A squad will be filled by a Hooker on Monday.