Ireland v New Zealand – Starting team news – kick off 5:30pm Saturday

We have the starting team news from both the Irish and New Zealand rugby teams, kick off 5:30pm Saturday. 

The only change in Ireland rugby team is that Sean O’Brien comes in for the injured Jordie Murphy, with Peter O’Mahony missing out on the bench.

Rory Best will win his 99th cap as he leads out the team on Saturday. He is partnered in the front row by Jack McGrath and Tadhg Furlong with Devin Toner and Donnacha Ryan in the second row.

Vice-captain Jamie Heaslip will win his 90th cap for Ireland on Saturday. He is joined in the back row by O’Brien, who played 67 minutes against Canada last Saturday, and CJ Stander.

Conor Murray and Johnny Sexton fill the half-back positions while Robbie Henshaw and Jared Payne continue their midfield partnership.

The back three sees Rob Kearney at full-back with Andrew Trimble and Simon Zebo on the wings.

Paddy Jackson is named in the replacements having started against Canada while Iain Henderson also returns to the squad on the bench.

The other replacements are Sean Cronin, Cian Healy, Finlay Bealham, Josh van der Flier, Kieran Marmion and Garry Ringrose.

IRELAND Team & Replacements (v New Zealand, Guinness Series 2016, Saturday November 19, kick off 5:30pm live on RTE/Sky/

15. Rob Kearney (UCD/Leinster) 70
14. Andrew Trimble (Ballymena/Ulster) 67
13. Jared Payne (Ulster) 17
12. Robbie Henshaw (Buccaneers/Leinster) 23
11. Simon Zebo (Cork Constitution/Munster) 26
10. Johnny Sexton (St Mary’s College/Leinster) 62
9. Conor Murray (Garryowen/Munster) 51
1. Jack McGrath (St. Mary’s College/Leinster) 34
2. Rory Best (Banbridge/Ulster) 98 (c)
3. Tadhg Furlong (Clontarf/Leinster) 9
4. Donnacha Ryan (Shannon/Munster) 42
5. Devin Toner (Lansdowne/Leinster) 40
6. CJ Stander (Munster) 8
7. Sean O’Brien (UCD/Leinster) 43
8. Jamie Heaslip (Dublin University/Leinster) 89 (v/c)

16. Sean Cronin (St Mary’s College/Leinster) 54
17. Cian Healy (Clontarf/Leinster) 60
18. Finlay Bealham (Buccaneers/Connacht) 4
19. Iain Henderson (Ballynahinch/Ulster) 26
20. Josh van der Flier (UCD/Leinster) 3
21. Kieran Marmion (Galway Corinthians/Connacht) 7
22. Paddy Jackson (Dungannon/Ulster) 17
23. Garry Ringrose (UCD/Leinster)

In the forwards for New Zealand, the starting front row from the first Test against Ireland of props Joe Moody and Owen Franks and hooker Dane Coles, has been bolstered by the return of senior locks Brodie Retallick and Samuel Whitelock, while in the loose forwards, captain Kieran Read returns at number eight, while last week’s captain, Sam Cane, is alongside him in the number seven jersey for his 40th Test. Regular blindside flanker Jerome Kaino has been ruled out with a mild calf strain, so Liam Squire will make his third Test start in his eighth Test, in the number six jersey.

In the backs, halfback Aaron Smith and first five-eighth Beauden Barrett will start their eighth Test of 2016 as the starting inside pairing, while second five-eighth Anton Lienert-Brown and centre Malakai Fekitoa will play their second consecutive Test in the midfield. In the outsides, Ben Smith is at fullback and Israel Dagg on the right wing in what will be the 60th Test for both, with Julian Savea in his regular left wing jersey. The replacements bench is hooker Codie Taylor and props Wyatt Crockett and Charlie Faumuina, lock Scott Barrett in his third test of the Tour, loose forward Ardie Savea, halfback TJ Perenara, first five-eighth Aaron Cruden and outside back Waisake Naholo.

All Blacks Head Coach Steve Hansen said: “As expected, there is huge excitement and anticipation within our squad ahead of this weekend’s Test against the Irish. While there was obvious disappointment at the loss in Chicago, disappointment doesn’t win Test matches – it’s about having great preparation and attitude, and delivering on the day.

“We know the challenge we face from Ireland will again be massive and we are going into the game as the underdogs. They’ll be full of confidence and committed to delivering on their home patch. So we will have to take a massive step up, to get the performance we are looking for. It is a challenge that this team needs right now and how we respond will tell us a lot about ourselves. As I said, we are very much looking forward to Saturday.”

All Blacks vs Ireland, Dublin – key facts

* The All Blacks and Ireland have played each other 29 times since 1905, with 27 wins to the All Blacks, a single 10-10 draw in 1973 and one loss.
* As well as Scott Barrett, eight other players will be playing in their third Test of the Vista Northern Tour: Naholo, Fekitoa, Cruden, Aaron Smith, Cane, Moody, Faumuina and Taylor.
* Beauden Barrett, who was named World Player of the Year on the weekend, has converted 34 tries for the All Blacks so far this year, the second most by any All Black since Dan Carter kicked 39 in 2010. Only two players in New Zealand’s history have kicked more first-class conversions in a calendar year than Barrett’s 84 to date: former Northland and Wellington (and Leinster) player David Holwell who kicked 85 and current All Blacks selector Grant Fox, who kicked 85, 93 and 103 in three separate years.
* The All Blacks have scored four or more tries in 12 consecutive matches this year.
* All Blacks captain Kieran Read and Owen Franks will be playing their eighth Tests against Ireland.
* Aaron Smith picked up his 50th All Black win in his 56th Test last weekend.
* Of the All Blacks Vista Northern Tour squad, 18 weren’t at last year’s Rugby World Cup.


1. All Blacks 29 Ireland 40. Saturday 5 November, Soldier Field, CHICAGO
2. Italy 10 All Blacks 66. Saturday 12 November, Stadio Olimpico, ROME
3. vs. IRELAND, Sat 19 Nov, 5.30PM GMT (Sun 20 Nov, 6.30AM NZT), Aviva Stadium, DUBLIN
4. vs. FRANCE, Sat 26 Nov, 9.00PM CET (Sun 27 Nov, 9.00AM NZT), Stade de France, PARIS


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