Irish Rugby
Murphy starts for Ireland Select XV
ESPNscrum Staff
August 17, 2011
Ireland skipper Geordan Murphy takes on the Maori defence, New Zealand Maori v Ireland, Rotorua International Stadium, Rotorua, New Zealand, June 18, 2010
Murphy will vie with the likes of Rob Kearney for the fullback berth © Getty Images

Geordan Murphy will pull on an Ireland shirt for the first time in over a year after being named in the side to face Connacht on Thursday.

Murphy - who takes the fullback reins in the Ireland Select XV - played for the Leicester Tigers in a pre-season friendly against Montpellier last week in a bid to prove his fitness to Ireland boss Declan Kidney ahead of the World Cup. Murphy has struggled with a serious ankle injury and hopes to gatecrash the final 30-man squad charged with the mission of claiming the William Webb Ellis Cup.

The Tigers fullback will be joined in the backs by fellow World Cup hopefuls Paddy Wallace and Isaac Boss. Ireland's captain for their previous two warm-up Tests - Leo Cullen - will start in the second-row engine room alongside Munster's Mick O'Driscoll. In the back-row Leinster's Shane Jennings makes his return from a broken arm at openside with Denis Leamy anchoring the scrum at No.8.

Ireland Select XV: Geordan Murphy, Johne Murphy, Darren Cave, Ian Keatley, Fergus McFadden, Paddy Wallace, Isaac Boss, Tony Buckley, Sean Cronin, John Hayes, Mick O'Driscoll, Leo Cullen, Kevin McLaughlin, Shane Jennings, Denis Leamy

Replacements: Damien Varley, Marcus Horan, Donnacha Ryan, Niall Ronan, Conor Murray, Denis Hurley, Ian Whitten

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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