ANDY Farrell has named a 38 strong squad for the upcoming Autumn Nations Series fixtures at the Aviva Stadium.
Ireland face Japan on Saturday 6th November before hosting New Zealand a week later on Saturday 13th. The final game in the series sees Mario Ledesma’s Argentina line out at the Aviva Stadium on Sunday 21st November. The Aviva Stadium will be at full capacity for these three games.
Johnny Sexton, who has been capped 99 times for his country, will lead the squad during this international window.
Six of Ireland’s players who toured with the British and Irish Lions during the summer - Bundee Aki, Tadhg Beirne, Jack Conan, Tadgh Furlong, Iain Henderson and Conor Murray - are included, as is Ronan Kelleher who joined the squad in South Africa.
Six of the players who won their first caps during the Vodafone Summer Series in July have been included in the squad – Robert Baloucoune, Harry Byrne, Gavin Coombes, James Hume, Tom O’Toole and Nick Timoney.
There are two uncapped players named - Leinster duo Dan Sheehan and Ciaran Frawley - while Munster’s Simon Zebo is named in an Ireland squad for the first time since June 2017.
Robbie Henshaw will continue his rehabilitation programme under the supervision of the Ireland medical team.
Thomas Ahern (Munster) and Jamie Osborne (Leinster) will train with the squad as development players during this window.
Ireland Head Coach Andy Farrell, commented: "It has been a short lead in to this international window but that is the challenge, to get back up to speed quickly and build on the performances from the Six Nations and the Summer Tests. This is the start of an exciting period for the group as we begin to build towards the Rugby World Cup in France.
"In September we got together and mapped out what was coming up in this window, the exciting fixtures that lay ahead in the next 12 months and beyond that the opportunities to improve as a group over the next five windows we will have together.
"In a few weeks’ time we will face an exciting and well coached Japan team who showed in July what a dangerous team they are. New Zealand dominated the Rugby Championship, losing just one game, while Argentina are battle hardened from playing the southern hemisphere’s big three week in week out over the past two months.
"It would be fantastic to play in front of a full-house at the Aviva Stadium. We had small crowds back in for the games in July and even that made a huge difference to the team and the atmosphere in the stadium."
Ireland’s Autumn Nations Series fixtures at the Aviva Stadium will be televised on RTE (ROI) and Channel 4 (NI).
IRELAND Autumn Nations Series Squad 2021
Bundee Aki (Connacht/Galwegians) 31 caps
Robert Baloucoune (Ulster/Enniskillen) 1 cap
Harry Byrne (Leinster/Lansdowne) 1 cap
Joey Carbery (Munster/Clontarf) 24 caps
Craig Casey (Munster/Shannon) 3 caps
Andrew Conway (Munster/Garryowen) 25 caps
Keith Earls (Munster/Young Munster) 93 caps
Ciaran Frawley (Leinster/UCD)*
Jamison Gibson Park (Leinster) 10 caps
James Hume (Ulster/Banbridge) 1 cap
Hugo Keenan (Leinster/UCD) 13 caps
Jordan Larmour (Leinster/St Mary’s College) 30 caps
James Lowe (Leinster) 6 caps
Stuart McCloskey (Ulster/Bangor) 5 caps
Conor Murray (Munster/Garryowen) 89 caps
Garry Ringrose (Leinster/UCD) 34 caps
Johnny Sexton (Leinster/St Mary’s College) 99 caps CAPTAIN
Simon Zebo (Munster/Cork Constitution) 35 caps
Ryan Baird (Leinster/Dublin University) 5 caps
Finlay Bealham (Connacht/Buccaneers) 16 caps
Tadhg Beirne (Munster/Lansdowne) 22 caps
Jack Conan (Leinster/Old Belvedere) 20 caps
Gavin Coombes (Munster/Young Munster) 2 caps
Ultan Dillane (Connacht/Corinthians) 19 caps
Caelan Doris (Leinster/St Mary’s College) 9 caps
Tadhg Furlong (Leinster/Clontarf) 49 caps
Cian Healy (Leinster/Clontarf) 109 caps
Iain Henderson (Ulster/Academy) 63 caps
Rob Herring (Ulster/Ballynahinch) 22 caps
Ronan Kelleher (Leinster/Lansdowne) 13 caps
Dave Kilcoyne (Munster/UL Bohemians) 45 caps
Peter O’Mahony (Munster/Cork Constitution) 76 caps
Tom O’Toole (Ulster/Ballynahinch) 1 cap
Andrew Porter (Leinster/UCD) 37 caps
James Ryan (Leinster/UCD) 37 caps
Dan Sheehan (Leinster/Lansdowne)*
Nick Timoney (Ulster/Banbridge) 1 cap
Josh van der Flier (Leinster/UCD) 32 caps
*denotes uncapped player
Thomas Ahern (Munster/Shannon)
Jamie Osborne (Leinster/Naas)
Autumn Nations Series 2021 Fixtures
IRELAND v Japan
Aviva Stadium , Saturday 6th November, 2021
IRELAND v New Zealand
Aviva Stadium , Saturday 13th November, 2021
IRELAND v Argentina
Aviva Stadium , Sunday 21st November, 2021