January 28, 2020 / 2:20 PM / 22 days ago

Rugby-Doris to make Ireland debut against Scotland in Six Nations Opener

(Reuters) - Caelan Doris will make his international debut after he was named in head coach Andy Farrell’s squad for their Six Nations opener against Scotland, the Irish Rugby Football Union (IRFU) said on Tuesday.

Former Ireland under-20 captain Doris will line out at number eight on Saturday, having impressed for Leinster this season.

The 21-year-old will be joined in the back row by CJ Stander and Josh van der Flier.

“We believe that any youngster coming on to the scene, the key point at international level is can they be themselves. Take the field, play their game,” Farrell told reporters.

“We believe that Caelan can do that. I like the fact he’s just himself, not fazed by coming into an international scene.”

In his first selection, Farrell has made five changes to the side that suffered World Cup quarter-final thrashing by New Zealand in October.

“I want to see the good old traditions of what all champion Irish teams have been about, a team the Irish public love watching,” Farrell, who took over from Joe Schmidt after the World Cup campaign, said.

“The little bits that we’re trying to build will take time, but hopefully before too long we’ll be talking about our own history.

“Obviously we’ve got a game plan in the back of our mind, and hopefully that will come to fruition over the coming weeks.”

The front row is made up of Cian Healy, Rob Herring and Tadgh Furlong, with Iain Henderson and James Ryan named at lock.

In the backs, Conor Murray has held off in-form Ulster scrumhalf John Cooney to start alongside new captain Johnny Sexton, with Bundee Aki and Garry Ringrose starting in the centre.

Farrell is also likely to hand a debut to Ronan Kelleher, who was named on the bench as cover for Herring.

Starting XV: 15-Jordan Larmour, 14-Andrew Conway, 13-Garry Ringrose, 12-Bundee Aki, 11-Jacob Stockdale, 10-Jonathan Sexton (captain), 9-Conor Murray, 8-Caelan Doris, 7-Josh van der Flier, 6-CJ Stander, 5-James Ryan, 4-Iain Henderson, 3-Tadhg Furlong, 2-Rob Herring, 1-Cian Healy.

Replacements: 16-Ronan Kelleher, 17-Dave Kilcoyne, 18-Andrew Porter, 19-Devin Toner, 20-Peter O’Mahony, 21-John Cooney, 22-Ross Byrne, 23-Robbie Henshaw.

Reporting by Hardik Vyas in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge and Pritha Sarkar

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