Rugby

Connacht Starting XV Gives Us A Very Good Indication Of One Of Joe Schmidt's Italy Selections

Connacht Starting XV Gives Us A Very Good Indication Of One Of Joe Schmidt's Italy Selections

Despite all the attempts for secrecy, it often seems that provincial team sheets can let Joe Schmidt's plans out of the bag.

Schmidt released 12 players from Irish camp to get some game-time this weekend, but there is one name missing from Connacht's plans that suggest a change will be made against Italy.

After making an impressive debut off the bench against England, Ultan Dillane is one of the few players retained by Schmidt ahead of next week's visit of Italy.

Connacht have been boosted by the return of Finlay Bealham, Nathan White, and Kieran Marmion from the Ireland squad for the crucial Pro 12 game against Edinburgh.

It's an extremely exciting Connacht team that sees Quinn Roux and Danie Poolman return to the starting line-up as Connacht attempt to continue their impressive winning streak that has seen them top the league.

Elsewhere, Craig Gilroy, Paddy Jackson, and Chris Henry start for Ulster in their clash with Zebre on the same night. Darren Cave is another who has been released from Irish camp and will start on the bench. Outgoing winger Rory Scholes is on the wing, with Gilroy starting at full-back. Ulster will be hosting a Zebre team containing Ian McKinley - who will be playing his first game of rugby in Ireland since retiring after the IRFU joined World Rugby's goggle trial.

Connacht team to face Edinburgh, Friday March 4th, 7:35pm

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15 Tiernan O'Halloran
14 Danie Poolman
13 Bundee Aki
12 Craig Ronaldson
11 Matt Healy
10 AJ MacGinty
9 Kieran Marmion

1 Denis Buckley
2 Tom McCartney
3 Nathan White
4 Quinn Roux
5 Aly Muldowney
6 Sean O'Brien
7 Jake Heenan
8 John Muldoon (captain)

Replacements:
16 Dave Heffernan
17 Finlay Bealham
18 Rodney Ah You
19 Danny Qualter
20 Eoin McKeon
21 Caolin Blade
22 Peter Robb
23 Fionn Carr

See Also: Cian Healy Criticised For 'Stupid And Offensive' Comment - He Didn't Take It Well

Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE

Gary Reilly

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