Ireland tickets sales reach 35,000 for World Cup warm-ups
Healy, O’Brien and Nick McCarthy added to Leinster roster for Champions Cup
Seán O’Brien is back in the Leinster squad for the Champions Cup campaign. Photograph: Mark Runnacles/PA Wire
The tickets went on sale in the second week of February, before the game against France, and as of Monday, roughly 35,000 tickets have been bought.
Joe Schmidt’s team take on the Scots on Saturday, August 15th (5.0), and, in their final home game before the World Cup kicks off, the Welsh on Saturday, August 29th (2.30).
Meanwhile, Leinster coach Matt O’Connor has added Cian Healy, Seán O’Brien and Ireland under-20 scrumhalf Nick McCarthy to the squad for the knockout stages of the Champions Cup, which starts with next Saturday’s quarter-final against Bath at the Aviva.
Teams are permitted to add three players, one of which must be a frontrow, to their 38-man rosters. The return to fitness of Healy and O’Brien, and their form in the Six Nations, is a huge boost for the province.
The former St Michael’s College schoolboy McCarthy captained Ireland during the Under-20 Six Nations Championship that began so promisingly but ultimate ended in disappointment.
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He is currently on loan to the English club from the Glasgow Warriors.
In the Challenge Cup, Connacht coach Pat Lam has named fullback-cum-wing Tiernan O’Halloran and backrow Eoghan Masterson as his supplementary players ahead of their quarter-final against Gloucester at Kingsholm.
Included in the English club’s trio of additional players is former underage Irish international Brendan Macken. The 23-year-old centre is on a short-term loan from Leinster until the end of the season.
London Irish, who play Edinburgh in a Challenge Cup quarter-final have added, Gerald Ellis, Nick Rouse and Balbriggan-born prop Jamie Hagan, who enjoyed a brief return to Leinster on a loan spell during the season.