So we are into a World Cup year now with Ireland currently the second favourites behind New Zealand to lift the Web Ellis Cuo in November. With that in my mind I have looked at the odds, in which Ireland players are to make the squad of Joe Schmidt.
So looking at the forwards. Cian Healy is 1/33 to make the squad alongside captain Rory Best at 1/12 and Tadgh Furlong at a massive 1/50. I would expect this front row to start the World Cup games against Scotland and Japan . Sean Cronin and Jack McGrath are 1/3 and 1/10 to make the squad along with Andrew Porter at 1/7. The second row is where it gets interesting Ian Henderson is 1/40 to make the squad alone, while James Ryan is also a shoe in at 1/40. Other players that are odds on making the squad are Devin Toner who is 1/ 12 to make the squad,Tadgh Beirne who is 1/5.
CJ Stander is 1/14 to be named in the squad itself, while his Munster team mate Peter O’Mahony is also the same price. Other players that can cover these positions include Sean O’Brien, Dan Leavy and Josh Van Der Flier. The Carlow man is 8/11 to make the squad, Leavy is 1/5 and Van Der Flier is 1/3. Rhys Ruddock, Jack Conan and Jordi Murphy may also be in contention currently all around even money. I would love O’Brien, Stander and O’Mahony to all start a couplecof games together. Very strong options no matter what way you look at it.
At number 9 Conor Murray will be the selection, however back up will be needed John Cooney 1/3 and Kieran Marmion will provide cover. Marmion is 1/7 to make the squad, with Cooney 1/3. At number 10 without doubt Johnny Sexton is a 1/50 shot to be named in the squad, while Joey Carbery though has surely worked himself into contention with some superb performances as of late he is 1/14 to make the squad itself. Ross Byrne may be a third choice kicker to bring he is 1/3 to make the squad currently.
In the backs, Rob Kearney is a shoe in to be named in the squad at 1/12, Keith Earls Jordan Larmour and Andrew Conyway will also be in contention and they will for sure make the squad. Earls is 1/25 and Stockdale is 1/3. At 12 and 13 there will be fierce competition. Bundee Aki, Gary Ringrose, Robbie Henshaw and Chris Farrell. Ring rose is 1/40 and Henshaw is 1/30 respectively to make Joe Schmidt’s squad . Aki is 1/10 and Chris Farrell is 6/5. Aki is a certainty to go to the world cup, Farrell not sure but the odds of 6/5 suggest he has a strong chance .
Some outsiders at around 3/1 to make the squad include Sam Arnold, Darren Sweetman and Adam Byrne. Bigger priced players include Stuart McCloskey 11/2, Tommy O Donnell 9/1 and Dave Kearney 16/1. Whatever we look at it we have an interesting few months ahead for Ireland and Joe Schmidt.