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Six Nations 2020: Unbeaten Ireland unchanged to face England at Twickenham

Caelan Doris returns to the Ireland replacements after being injured in the opening win over Scotland
Six Nations Championship: England v Ireland
Venue: Twickenham Stadium Date: Sunday, 23 February Kick-off: 15:00 GMT
Coverage: Listen on BBC 5 Live Sports Extra & Radio Ulster; live text commentary on the BBC Sport website & app.

Triple Crown-chasing Ireland have named an unchanged side for Sunday’s Six Nations match against World Cup finalists England at Twickenham.

Head coach Andy Farrell’s only change is on the bench as Leinster forward Caelan Doris returns to the squad after being ruled out of the win over Wales.

The number eight made his Ireland debut in the opening day defeat of Scotland, but went off early with a head injury.

Peter O’Mahony replaced him and has retained his starting place.

The experienced Munster back row responded well to being left out against against Scotland and will again play flanker, with CJ Stander, man-of-the-match against Wales, at number eight.

Deegan drops out of 23

Max Deegan drops out of the matchday 23 that secured an impressive 24-14 win over the reigning Six Nations champions in Dublin on 8 February, a result which means Farrell’s men would clinch a Triple Crown with victory at Twickenham.

Sunday’s match will be Ireland’s first Six Nations match at Twickenham since they clinched the Grand Slam at the venue in March 2018.

Farrell said that he had opted for “continuity after a decent performance last time”.

“A few boys came back and gave us a few headaches but we decided to go with a similar selection and see if we can build on what we did the last time round,” Farrell told Irish Rugby TV.

“Caelan Doris is fully recovered. He’s been training with us and we’re looking forward to him coming off the bench.”

Paul O’Connell will be with the Ireland squad until Friday

O’Connell with Ireland squad this week

Ahead of what Farrell described as a “big challenge” at Twickenham, former Ireland captain Paul O’Connell is spending time with the squad this week.

“We invited Paul in to see what he thinks about the environment and as a sounding board for the lads,” added the Ireland coach.

“We’ll get some good feedback from him. He might learn a few things along the way himself.

“It’s great to have past players [here] and someone who the boys really respect.”

England, who beat the Scots in round two after losing their opener against France, will be without prop Mako Vunipola after he returned to Tonga for family reasons.

With Conor Murray keeping his place at scrum-half, John Cooney must once again settle for a place on the bench despite his impressive form in the Ulster number nine jersey this season.

Robbie Henshaw has overcome a head injury suffered against Wales to renew his centre partnership with Bundee Aki while experienced Keith Earls again has to be content with a place on the bench as Andrew Conway, Jacob Stockdale and Jordan Larmour again occupy the back-three positions.

Ireland: Larmour; Conway, Henshaw, Aki, Stockdale; Sexton, Murray; Healy, Herring, Furlong, Henderson, Ryan, O’Mahony, van der Flier, Stander.

Replacements: Kelleher, Kilcoyne, Porter, Toner, Doris, Cooney, Byrne, Earls.

Article courtesy of BBC Sport
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