Cian Healy has been ruled out of Ireland's game with Italy. Healy pulled up at training yesterday with a mild hamstring strain. Schmidt isn't prepared to risk the Lion, and Connacht tighthead Finlay Bealham has been given the call to replace him on the bench. Healy is likely to be back against Scotland, although it's the same hamstring that has given him a lot of issues in the past.
Bealham could be in line for his debut should he come off the bench, and it brings the number of Connacht representatives in the squad to five joining Kieran Marmion, Robbie Henshaw, Ultan Dillane, and Nathan White.
— Irish Rugby (@IrishRugby) March 11, 2016
Normally a tighthead, Bealham has had a career season with Connacht - showing his versatility by playing on both sides of the scrum during their injury crisis. The Australian born prop was brought up playing rugby league and moved to Ireland in 2010 to play rugby with Belfast Harlequins. Bealham qualifies for Ireland through his grandmother, and played for the Ireland U20s in 2011.
Bealham is the latest product of Nigel Carolan's Connacht academy in line for a debut, and leapfrogs more established looseheads in the country like Munster pair James Cronin and Dave Kilcoyne, as well as his Connacht team-mate Denis Buckley.
See Also: Ireland Team To Face Italy
Picture credit: Seb Daly / SPORTSFILE