Six changes have been made to Ireland’s starting lineup for Sunday’s Six Nations contest against Scotland, including the return of several important players.
Garry Ringrose, Tadhg Furlong, and Captain Johnny Sexton all make a comeback from their wounds.
In addition, Peter O’Mahony, Dan Sheehan, and Conor Murray are brought back to the Irish starting lineup.
Fit-again For the Murrayfield game, Robbie Henshaw and Jamison Gibson-Park are listed as replacements.
Ireland has won its first three games in their quest for the Grand Slam, defeating Wales, France, and Italy. Andy Farrell’s team is attempting to complete the Grand Slam for the first time since 2018.
Henderson hails the “unique atmosphere” inside the Ireland team
Ireland is preparing for a “motivated and pumped up Scotland,” while Sexton gets ready for the “greatest Scottish team I’ve faced.”
Murray is chosen after putting up a strong performance as a substitute against Italy, replacing Murray’s Leinster teammate Ross Byrne, who missed the victory against Italy due to a groin injury.
Gibson-Park, a backup scrum-half, will likely play in his first Six Nations game in 2023 as Craig Casey is cut from the team after making his debut in Rome.
After a last-minute withdrawal from the victory over Italy, Stuart McCloskey took Ringrose’s place at inside center, while Bundee Aki switched from the number 12 position.
For the game in Edinburgh, Aki keeps his spot in the lineup because McCloskey is said to have sustained a slight “niggling” injury.
Furlong, a prop who has yet to make an appearance in the championship, replaces Connacht tighthead Finlay Bealham in the front row. Bealham, who started the first three games of the season, is out for the rest of the season with a knee injury.
Ulster’s Tom O’Toole will anticipate receiving extensive game time off the bench considering Furlong hasn’t started a game since December 3.
Sheehan is back at hooker after fully recovering from his hamstring injury, and in the matchday 23 Ronan Kelleher is picked over Rob Herring as a backup.
In place of the injured Tadhg Beirne, Henderson continues to play in the second row with James Ryan. Ryan Baird, another player who impressed when he came off the bench against Italy, loses out to the Ulsterman.
James Lowe experienced calf tightness during that match in Rome, but he has been cleared to play in the pivotal match against the Scots.
Caelan Doris switches from the flanker position he played against Italy to his more comfortable position at number eight as a result of O’Mahony’s comeback.
Henshaw rejoins the team after missing time with hamstring and wrist issues since November.
Ireland: Keenan; Hansen, Ringrose, Aki, Lowe; Sexton (capt), Murray; Porter, Sheehan, Furlong; Henderson, Ryan, O’Mahony, van der Flier, Doris.
Kelleher, Healy, O’Toole, Baird, Conan, Gibson-Park, Byrne, and Henshaw are the replacements.