Picking An Ireland Team To Take On Wales

Friday night lights.

Joe Schmidt once again faces some difficult decisions ahead of Friday week’s clash with Wales at the Principality.

It’s another must win game for Ireland, who know a loss will almost surely end all hope of clinching a third Six Nations title in four years.

Wales have been hot and cold in the Six Nations this year, and while their chances of winning the tournament all but ended with their loss to Scotland, they’re in a position where they could drop out of the top eight in the rankings, should they lost to Ireland and France.

Schmidt has no real injury concerns heading into the tie so far, bar Rob Kearney who came off against France with a groin problem. To be quite honest Kearney has been off the pac this year and is clearly struggling. After surprisingly recovering from a bicep problem to play against France, it’s time Kearney took the week off.

Jared Payne returned to action this past weekend and should start for Ulster against Treviso this weekend. Schmidt is a huge fan of the New Zealander, with his experience and defensive leadership qualities second to none. Whether or not Schmidt brings him into the starting line-up remains to be seen.

Here’s the Ireland team we reckon he should go with for the clash in Cardiff.

Potential Ireland team to take on Wales

1. Jack McGrath
2. Rory Best (c)
3. Tadhg Furlong
4. Donnacha Ryan
5. Devin Toner
6. CJ Stander
7. Sean O’Brien
8. Jamie Heaslip
9. Conor Murray
10. Johnny Sexton
11. Keith Earls
12. Robbie Henshaw
13. Gary Ringrose
14. Andrew Trimble
15. Simon Zebo

Replacements

16. Niall Scannell
17. Cian Healy
18. John Ryan
19. Iain Henderson
20. Peter O’Mahony
21. Kieran Marmion
22. Paddy Jackson
23. Jared Payne

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