Youthful Irish squad to tour USA, Japan

Ireland coach Joe Schmidt has included eight uncapped players in his 31-man squad for the three-Test tour of the USA and Japan in June.

They are John Cooney, Dave Heffernan, Rory O’Loughlin, Andrew Porter, James Ryan, Rory Scannell, Jacob Stockdale and Kieran Treadwell.

'With 11 players due to tour with the British & Irish Lions, plus a number of injuries to experienced internationals, the summer tour squad includes plenty of youth,' said Schmidt. 'There is a real freshness to the group, including the coaching staff, so we’re looking forward to what will be a very challenging summer tour.

'We have retained a sprinkling of experienced players, some of whom may yet be called up to the Lions, but the focus is really on challenging the younger players to cope with the heat and foreign conditions as well as the speed and physicality of Test rugby.'

Ireland will play the USA at the Red Bull Arena in New Jersey on Saturday, 10 June, before taking on Japan at the Ecopa Stadium in Shizuoka and the Ajinomoto Stadium in Tokyo over the next two Saturdays.

Ireland squad:

Forwards: Finlay Bealham, Jack Conan, Cian Healy, Dave Heffernan, Dave Kilcoyne, Dan Leavy, Tommy O’Donnell, Jack O’Donoghue, Andrew Porter, Rhys Ruddock, James Ryan, John Ryan, Niall Scannell, Devin Toner, James Tracy, Kieran Treadwell, Josh van der Flier.

Backs: Joey Carbery, Andrew Conway, John Cooney, Keith Earls, Paddy Jackson, Kieran Marmion, Luke Marshall, Luke McGrath, Tiernan O’Halloran, Rory O’Loughlin, Garry Ringrose, Rory Scannell, Jacob Stockdale, Simon Zebo.

Photo: Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

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