Ireland call on rookies

Coach Joe Schmidt has included three uncapped players in Ireland's 40-man squad for the opening two rounds of the 2017 Six Nations.

Munster trio Andrew Conway and brothers Niall and Rory Scannell were called into the national squad, with Schmidt saying their inclusion is just reward for the form they've shown in recent months.

'It has been good to watch the players over the past two months and great to see them doing to well.'

Loose forward CJ Stander has also been retained in the playing group, which will be led by hooker Rory Best.

Ireland squad:

Forwards – Finlay Bealham, Rory Best (c), Jack Conan, Ultan Dillane, Tadhg Furlong, Cian Healy, Jamie Heaslip, Iain Henderson, Billy Holland, Dave Kilcoyne, Dan Leavy, Jack McGrath, Sean O’Brien, Tommy O’Donnell, Peter O’Mahony, Donnacha Ryan, John Ryan, Niall Scannell, CJ Stander, Devin Toner, James Tracy, Josh van der Flier.

Backs – Tommy Bowe, Andrew Conway, Keith Earls, Craig Gilroy, Robbie Henshaw, Paddy Jackson, Rob Kearney, Kieran Marmion, Luke Marshall, Stuart McCloskey, Luke McGrath, Conor Murray, Tiernan O’Halloran, Garry Ringrose, Rory Scannell, Jonathan Sexton, Andrew Trimble, Simon Zebo.

Photo: Ramsey Cardy/Getty Images

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Mariette Adams