Five Connacht players named for Irish side on New Zealand tour

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Galway Daily rugby Bundee Aki to start in final Test game in New Zealand

The 40 man Ireland squad for the five game tour of New Zealand this summer has been named, and includes five Connacht players.

Andy Farrell, head coach for Connacht and the national squad, has included Bundee Aki, Mack Hansen, Finlay Bealham, Dave Heffernan, and Cian Prendergast in the Irish side.

This is Ireland’s first tour of New Zealand since 2012, and the first chance the country has had to go on a full tour since before the pandemic.

Ireland will play three Test matches against New Zealand in Auckland, Dunedin and Wellington as well as two fixtures against the Māori All Blacks in Hamilton ahead of the first Test and in Wellington following the second Test.

There are five uncapped players included in the squad Ciaran Frawley, Joe McCarthy, Jimmy O’Brien (all Leinster), Jeremy Loughman (Munster) and Cian Prendergast (Connacht).

There are a further 12 players included who have won less than 10 caps for Ireland – Harry Byrne, Craig Casey, Gavin Coombes, Mack Hansen, James Hume, Michael Lowry, Ryan Baird, Dave Heffernan, Tom O’Toole, Dan Sheehan, Nick Timoney and Kieran Treadwell.

Robert Baloucoune, Andrew Conway, Chris Farrell and Ronan Kelleher have been ruled out of the tour through injury.

Andy Farrell said, “This is the start of our Rugby World Cup campaign and it is going to be a fantastic challenge for our group facing five massive tests across the three weeks.”

“Due to Covid we haven’t had an opportunity to tour and touring plays a massive role in teams gelling together and building cohesion on and off the field.”

“This group could also be the last to play a Test series in New Zealand which makes it even more special.”

We will learn so much about the players and the group as a whole as we have to front up for five incredibly tough fixtures, far from the comforts of home and in grounds where the home support will greatly outnumber travelling Irish fans.”

Connacht’s Senior Coach Peter Wilkins will also join the national coaching group for the duration of the tour to assist in team preparation.

Ireland 2022 Summer Tour Squad

Backs (18)
Bundee Aki (Connacht/Galwegians) 37 caps
Harry Byrne (Leinster/Lansdowne) 2 caps
Joey Carbery (Munster/Clontarf) 32 caps
Craig Casey (Munster/Shannon) 5 caps
Keith Earls (Munster/Young Munster) 96 caps
Ciaran Frawley (Leinster/Skerries) uncapped
Jamison Gibson Park (Leinster) 17 caps
Mack Hansen (Connacht) 4 caps
Robbie Henshaw (Leinster/Buccaneers) 57 caps
James Hume (Ulster/Banbridge) 3 caps
Hugo Keenan (Leinster/UCD) 20 caps
Jordan Larmour (Leinster/St Mary’s College) 30 caps
James Lowe (Leinster) 12 caps
Michael Lowry (Ulster/Banbridge) 1 cap
Conor Murray (Munster/Garryowen) 96 caps
Jimmy O’Brien (Leinster/Naas) uncapped
Garry Ringrose (Leinster/UCD) 42 caps
Johnny Sexton (Leinster/St Mary’s College) 105 caps CAPTAIN

Forwards (22)
Ryan Baird (Leinster/Dublin University) 8 caps
Finlay Bealham (Connacht/Buccaneers) 23 caps
Tadhg Beirne (Munster/Lansdowne) 30 caps
Jack Conan (Leinster/Old Belvedere) 27 caps
Gavin Coombes (Munster/Young Munster) 2 caps
Caelan Doris (Leinster/St Mary’s College) 17 caps
Tadhg Furlong (Leinster/Clontarf) 57 caps
Cian Healy (Leinster/Clontarf) 116 caps
Dave Heffernan (Connacht/Buccaneers) 6 caps
Iain Henderson (Ulster/Academy) 68 caps
Rob Herring (Ulster/Ballynahinch) 26 caps
Jeremy Loughman (Munster/Garryowen) uncapped
Joe McCarthy (Leinster/Dublin) uncapped
Peter O’Mahony (Munster/Cork Constitution) 84 caps
Tom O’Toole (Ulster/Ballynahinch) 2 caps
Andrew Porter (Leinster/UCD) 43 caps
Cian Prendergast (Connacht) uncapped
James Ryan (Leinster/UCD) 43 caps
Dan Sheehan (Leinster/Lansdowne) 7 caps
Nick Timoney (Ulster/Banbridge) 2 caps
Kieran Treadwell (Ulster/Ballymena) 5 caps
Josh van der Flier (Leinster/UCD) 40 caps

Ireland 2022 Summer Tour Fixtures

Māori All Blacks v IRELAND
FMG Stadium, Hamilton, Wednesday 29th June, 2022 (KO: 8.05am)

New Zealand v IRELAND
Eden Park, Auckland, Saturday 2nd July, 2022 (KO: 8.05am)

New Zealand v IRELAND
Forsyth Barr Stadium, Dunedin, Saturday 9th July, 2022 (KO: 8.05am)

Māori All Blacks v IRELAND
SKY Stadium, Wellington, Tuesday 12th July, 2022 (KO: 8.05am)

New Zealand v IRELAND
SKY Stadium, Wellington, Saturday 16th July, 2022 (KO: 8.05am)