Van der Flier, Conan named in Ireland XV for final World Cup warm-up

©INPHO/Dan Sheridan

Josh van der Flier and Jack Conan have been named in the starting XV for Ireland’s final World Cup warm-up game, against Wales, on Saturday, as Joe Schmidt and Rory Best prepare for their final matches at the Aviva Stadium.

Schmidt takes charge of Ireland for the last time at home this weekend, and has made 12 changes to the team that will play their final game before traveling out to Japan.


Rory Best, who will retire after the Rugby World Cup, leads the much-changed side, while Cian Healy and Tadhg Furlong join the captain in the front row.

James Ryan and Jean Kleyn join up in the second row, with Jack Conan starting at No. 8 and CJ Stander coming into the backrow at 6.

Josh van der Flier, Conan’s fellow County Wicklow-native, comes in at number 7.

This weekend’s final Guinness Series tie also marks the return of Johnny Sexton, who makes his seasonal debut, and is joined in the half backs by Conor Murray. Bundee Aki starts at 12 and Robbie Henshaw comes in at 13.

Keith Earls is also back, on the left wing with Jordan Larmour on the right and Rob Kearney at fullback.

Ireland starting XV vs Wales; Saturday, 7th September, 2pm:

15. Rob Kearney (UCD/Leinster) 91 caps
14. Jordan Larmour (St Mary’s College/Leinster) 15 caps
13. Robbie Henshaw (Buccaneers/Leinster) 37 caps
12. Bundee Aki (Galwegians/Connacht) 19 caps
11. Keith Earls (Young Munster/Munster) 77 caps
10. Jonathan Sexton (St Marys College/Leinster) 83 caps
9. Conor Murray (Garryowen/Munster) 73 caps

1. Cian Healy (Clontarf/Leinster) 90 caps
2. Rory Best (Banbridge/Ulster) 119 caps CAPTAIN
3. Tadhg Furlong (Clontarf/Leinster) 35 caps
4. James Ryan (UCD/Leinster) 18 caps
5. Jean Kleyn (Munster) 2 caps
6. CJ Stander (Shannon/Munster) 32 caps
7. Josh van der Flier (UCD/Leinster) 18 caps
8. Jack Conan (Old Belvedere/Leinster) 15 caps


16. Sean Cronin (St Mary’s College/Leinster) 69 caps
17. Dave Kilcoyne (UL Bohemians/Munster) 30 caps
18. Andrew Porter (UCD/Leinster) 17 caps
19. Iain Henderson (Queens University/Ulster) 47 caps
20. Rhys Ruddock (St Mary’s College/Leinster) 22
21. Luke McGrath (UCD/Leinster) 13 caps
22. Jack Carty (Buccaneers/Connacht) 6 caps
23. Garry Ringrose (UCD/Leinster) 23 caps

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