French replaces injured Hawkshaw for France encounter

Ireland skipper set to miss last two games of U20 Six Nations with knee injury

Ireland captain David Hawkshaw will miss the remaining matches in the Under-20 Six Nations Championship, starting with Friday's game against world champions France at Musgrave Park (7.15).

The Clontarf centre damaged a knee and is waiting for the swelling to go down so that he can receive a definitive medical opinion on the extent of the injury but as things stand he will definitely miss the games against France and Wales.

Cork Constitution's Seán French, who scored a brace of tries for his club while playing on the wing at the weekend, replaces Hawkshaw at inside centre. There are three changes to the replacements from the Italian win, with hooker John McKee and prop Ryan Lomas back in the matchday squad, while Ryan Baird takes over from Clontarf's Brian Deeny.

Baird, a hugely talented secondrow, was injured for the early part of the season but a couple of games recently for Dublin University in the All-Ireland League Division 1A underlined his fitness. Ireland have beaten England, Scotland and Italy but the challenge will prove tougher against the reigning world and Six Nations champions.


IRELAND: J Flannery (Shannon); A Kernohan (QUB), L Turner (Dublin University), S French (Cork Constitution), J Wren (Cork Constitution); H Byrne (Lansdowne), C Casey (Shannon); J Wycherley (Young Munster), D Tierney-Martin (Corinthians), T Clarkson (Dublin University); C Ryan (UCD), N Murray (Buccaneers); M Moloney (Old Belvedere), S Penny (UCD), J Hodnett (UCC).

Replacements: J McKee (Old Belvedere), C Reid (Banbridge), R Lomas (Galwegians), R Baird (Dublin University), D McCann (Banbridge), C Foley (St Mary's College), B Healy (Garryowen), R Russell (Dublin University).

John O'Sullivan

John O'Sullivan

John O'Sullivan is an Irish Times sports writer