Murphy relies on Grand Slam experience as Ireland prepare for French Test

Ireland boss Richie Murphy will be relying on Grand Slam experience when his side take on France in the Six Nations Under-20 summer series today.

Ryland’s opening XV against Les Blaes will feature 14 members of the squad that won the Six Nations Under-20 Grand Slam in February.

The top two of February’s 2022 Six Nations Under-20 Championship will face off in a game at the Paynini Rugby Center.

The last time the two sides met, Ireland looked one step closer to the Grand Slam with a dramatic 17-16 win over hosts France at the Stade Maurice Davide.

Winger Shay McCarthy has been in line for Ireland U20s debut in the last three years, the only player in a Grand Slam starting squad without his name.

After facing France in February, Leinster winger Etzol King returned to Ireland’s starting line-up, while Dylan O’Grady completed the All-Leinster in three.

Fionn Gibbons, an outstanding performer for Ireland during the Championship, is Daniel Hawkshaw’s teammate in midfield, while the Munster pair of Tony Butler and Ethan Coughlan are half-back.

Daragh McSweeney and Oisin Mitchell will stand on either side of versatile hooker James McCormick.

And in the second row, Ireland will be able to rely on Conor O’Tighernagh and take out Ulster forward Adam McNamee.

Captain Ruben Crowther, James McNabney and Lorcan McLaughlin are in the back row ahead of Ireland’s first match of the Summer Series.

For France, Max Auriac, Ethan Randall and Louis Biel-Bire made Les Blaises three behind.

In the centres, Captain Emilian Galton is partnered by Nicolas Deportere.

They will be fed by fly-half Leo Barre and LiveWire Nine Baptiste Jaunou.

Thomas Moukoro, Sa, and Eliot Yemasi make up the front row with ready-made locks Samuel M’Foudi and Leo Laborte behind them.

While Noe della Schiava, Maxime Baudon and Kylian Tixront will start in the back row

France will be out for revenge against Ireland in Italy, and hooker Connor Sa stressed how challenging France’s training camps can be in the build-up to competitions like the Six Nations Summer Series.

He said: “With all these camps, it really puts you in a different place, it puts you in a professional field and pushes you into a different area.

“When you’re with a club, you really know everyone whereas when you’re with the French team it’s different – it’s more serious and more focused.”

The Six Nations U20 Summer Series takes place from June 24 to July 12. Fans can watch every match live. visit for more information Here.

Ireland: 15. Dylan O’Grady, 14. Etzoll King, 13. Fionn Gibbons, 12. Daniel Hawkshaw, 11. Shay McCarthy, 10. Tony Butler, 9. Ethan Coughlan; 1. Oisin Mitchell, 2. James McCormick, 3. Darragh McSweeney, 4. Connor O’Tighernagh, 5. Adam McNamee, 6. James McNabney, 7. Reuben Crowther 8. Lorcan McLaughlin

Replacement: 16. Josh Hanlon, 17. George Hayden, 18. Kieran Ryan, 19. Charlie Irwin (Queen’s University Belfast RFC/Ulster) 20. Diarmuid Mangan, 21. Michael Moloney, 22. Sam Prendergast, 23. George Comber, 24. Rees Malone, 25. George Shaw, 26. Ronan O’Sullivan

France: 15. Max Auriac, 14. Ethan Randall, 13. Emilian Galleton (c), 12. Nicolas Deportere, 11. Louis Bilay-Biare, 10. Leo Barre, 9. Baptiste Jaunou, 1. Thomas Moucoro, 2. Connor Sa, 3. Eliot Yemsey, 4. Samuel M’Foudi, 5. Leo Labarthe, 6. Noe della Schiava, 7. Maxime Bowdon, 8. Kilian Tixront.

Replacement: 16. Victor Montgallard, 17. Pierre-Emmanuel Pacheco, 18. Robin Belemand, 19. Rafael Portet, 20. Leo Baos, 21. Jules Cullen, 22. Simon Tarrell, 23. Matteo García, 24. Malohi Suta, 25. Emile Dayral, 26. Gatian Masse