Friday, 22 March, 2019

Warren Gatland snaps back at Eddie Jones ahead of Six Nations finale

O'Brien back for Ireland as Beirne makes Six Nations bow Munster player to make Six Nations debut for Ireland against Wales
Cassandra Castillo | 16 March, 2019, 17:41

If Ireland do win in Cardiff it would open the door for England by defeating the Scots at Twickenham in the final game of the championship.

Veteran flanker Sean O'Brien returns to the team - for his injured Leinster team-mate Josh van der Flier - after being omitted for the France game.

Noel McNamara's side have already won their Six Nations title, and are now aiming to make it five wins out of five with victory over Wales in Colwyn Bay.

Wales head coach Warren Gatland has fired back at England head coach Eddie Jones after the Australian said that his side looked a bit "fatigued" ahead of their Grand Slam decider with Ireland on Saturday.

Rory Best will captain from the front row in between Cian Healy and Tadhg Furlong.

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Beirne is joined in the Ireland pack by Munster back-rowers Peter O'Mahony and CJ Stander.

Ireland are without lock Iain Henderson for Saturday's Six Nations showdown against Wales in Cardiff. "We've got an opportunity to show that we're the best team in the Six Nations and approaching the best team in the world and we're not going to miss that opportunity". If it was me I'd be concentrating on playing Scotland.

"With that combination, I do think he is as ready as we can get him to be at this stage and I know he's incredibly motivated to be as ready as he can be".

The Conor Murray and Johnny Sexton half-back partnership remains intact, while Bundee Aki and Garry Ringrose line out in the centre. Dave Kilcoyne 18. Andrew Porter 19.

Kieran Marmion has been named on the bench as cover for Conor Murray and Athlone's Jack Carty is also in the replacements once again.

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