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Ireland coach casts a wide net

Tue, 17 Sep 2013 16:06
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Jennings back in the mix
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New Ireland coach Joe Schmidt has announced a 42-man training squad ahead of the end-of-year internationals.

The extended squad will begin preparations for the Tests against Samoa, Australia and New Zealand on Sunday when the players will assemble in Carton House.

The squad, which sees the return of Leinster loose forward Shane Jennings after a two-year hiatus, will be cut following the two-day training camp.

"Selection was difficult as it's the first time we have had to narrow our focus a bit and determine a cut off point for players. A number of selections were very tight which is positive,” said Schmidt.

“The group is predominantly tried and proven but with some newer faces as well. It's an opportunity to get to know the players as well as an opportunity to have a look ahead and start to get a little bit of organization done for the November series.

“There are a number of players such as Tommy O'Donnell, Michael Bent, Stuart Olding, Andrew Trimble, Craig Gilroy and Felix Jones that were not considered due to injury but some of these players may well be involved as they return to full fitness and resume playing.

“There are also a few players who have not yet had many opportunities to make an impression and a few youngsters who have been impressive in the early rounds of the Pro12 that we've left to keep working with their provinces.

“There is no doubting the challenge that November presents but we're looking forward to get a little bit of a head start this weekend," added Schmidt.

Ireland squad:

Backs:
Rob Kearney (Leinster), Robbie Henshaw (Connacht), Tommy Bowe (Ulster), Simon Zebo (Munster), Niall Morris (Leicester), Dave Kearney (Leinster), Fergus McFadden (Leinster), Luke Fitzgerald (Leinster), Brian O'Driscoll (Leinster), Keith Earls (Munster), Luke Marshall (Ulster), Gordon D'Arcy (Leinster), Jonathan Sexton (Racing Metro 92), Paddy Jackson (Ulster), Ian Madigan (Leinster), Conor Murray (Munster), Eoin Reddan (Leinster), Isaac Boss (Leinster).

Forwards: Cian Healy (Leinster), David Kilcoyne (Munster), Jack McGrath (Leinster), Stephen Archer (Munster), Declan Fitzpatrick (Ulster), Mike Ross (Leinster), Rory Best (Ulster), Sean Cronin (Leinster), Richardt Strauss (Leinster), Mike Sherry (Munster), Donncha O'Callaghan (Munster), Paul O'Connell (Munster), Donnacha Ryan (Munster), Mike McCarthy (Leinster), Devin Toner (Leinster), Dan Tuohy (Ulster), Iain Henderson (Ulster), Peter O'Mahony (Munster), Kevin McLaughlin (Leinster), James Coughlan (Munster), Shane Jennings (Leinster), Sean O'Brien (Leinster), Jamie Heaslip (Leinster), Chris Henry (Ulster).

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