Published: 14:45 | 10/10/19

Schmidt names strong team for Samoa clash

Head coach Joe Schmidt has named a near-full strength team for Ireland’s crucial Pool A clash with Samoa on Saturday morning.

Ireland need a bonus point win to secure their passage to the quarter-finals regardless of results elsewhere and Schmidt is taking no chances with his selection which includes a first outing of the tournament for centre Robbie Henshaw who has recovered from a hamstring injury.

Rory Best, Cian Healy and Tadgh Furlong all return to the front row, while Iain Henderson and James Ryan form a formidable partnership in the second row.

The back row sees Tadgh Beirne linking up with Josh van der Flier and CJ Stander, with Beirne getting the nod ahead of Peter O'Mahony and Rhys Ruddock.

Conor Murray and Jonathan Sexton are named at half-back with Bundee Aki and the returning Robbie Henshaw in the centre.

Jordan Larmour, Keith Earls and Jacob Stockdale form the back three, while Joey Carbery, Luke McGrath and O'Mahony are named on a strong bench alongside Andrew Porter, Niall Scannell, Dave Kilcoyne and Jean Kleyn.

Ireland team v Samoa: 

Ireland: Jordan Larmour, Keith Earls, Robbie Henshaw, Bundee Aki, Jacob Stockdale Johnny Sexton, Conor Murray; Cian Healy, Rory Best (capt), Tadhg Furlong, Iain Henderson, James Ryan, Tadhg Beirne, Josh van der Flier, CJ Stander

Replacements: Niall Scannell, Dave Kilcoyne, Andrew Porter, Jean Kleyn, Peter O'Mahony, Luke McGrath, Joey Carbery, Andrew Conway.

Samoa: Tim Nanai-Williams, Ah See Tuala, Alapati Leiua, Henry Taefu, Ed Fidow, Ulupano Seuteni, Dwayne Polataivao; Logovii Mulipola, Seilala Lam, Michael Alaalatoa, Teofilo Paulo, Kane Le'aupepe, Chris Vui, TJ Ioane, Jack Lam (capt).

Replacements: Ray Niuia, Paul Alo-Emile, Jordan Lay, Piula Faasalele, Josh Tyrell, Pele Cowley, Tusi Pisi, Kieron Fonotia.

Image: INPHO

***Watch Ireland v Samoa LIVE on eir sport 1 this Saturday from 10.45am

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