Saturday, 20 April, 2019


Rob Kearney returns to Ireland line-up for encounter against Scotland

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Noah Ferguson | 09 February, 2019, 16:45

Toner will miss just his seventh Test match in the Joe Schmidt era, his near-constant presence since November 2013 underscoring his importance to Ireland's line-out solidity.

"I think it will be a very fast, very physical game, a fantastic game to watch".

Munster Rugby centre Chris Farrell is also brought back instead of Leinster's Garry Ringrose, who picked up an injury against England.

Scotland are unbeaten in seven home Six Nations matches since losing to England in February 2016 and the progression of Edinburgh and Glasgow to this season's European Champions Cup quarter-finals has given them an extra boost.

Rob Kearney has returned at full-back after the experiment of moving Henshaw to 15 to face England failed amid Ireland's heavy defeat in Dublin.

"Robbie has a dead leg and just hasn't recovered in time", Schmidt said.

Henshaw was expected to return to the more familiar role of centre, allowing Rob Kearney to return to fullback but his absence hands Chris Farrell an opportunity in the midfield while Jack Conan and Quinn Roux replace the injured men in the pack. It's a knock on top of a knock.

Asked whether Kearney would've been full-back if Henshaw was fit, Schmidt replied: "Probably once Garry Ringrose was ruled out it was going to be [a case of] trying to keep a little continuity as best we can and get as cohesive as we can in a short space of time".

"You've got Chris Farrell sitting in the wings, massively motivated to do his best". This was, after all, Cooney's first taste of Six Nations rugby, and he was only on the... "He stepped in once past year and got man of the match and he's a guy who's getting back to form after the long lay-off he had".

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