We take a look at how Ireland’s 31-man Rugby World Cup squad may look when the tournament begins in September…


There is some good experience for Ireland to select from at hooker with Best being the clear starter, but with proven back ups in Cronin and Strauss.

1.Rory Best

2.Sean Cronin

3.Richardt Strauss


In Healy and McGrath Ireland have two fantastic options at loosehead, whilst there will be some competiton for a start on the other side of the scrum.

4.Cian Healy

5.Jack McGrath

6.Mike Ross

7.Martin Moore

8.David Kilcoyne


As captain O’Connell is guaranteed to start if fit, whilst Ryan and Toner offer plenty of experience, and Henderson provides something a little different.

9.Paul O’Connell

10.Donnacha Ryan

11.Devin Toner

12.Iain Henderson


Back Row

The back three pretty much pick themselves these days, whilst Murphy and Henry provide good cover across the positions.

13.Sean O’Brien

14.Peter O’Mahony

15.Jamie Heaslip

16.Jordi Murphy

17.Chris Henry

Scrum Half

Murray is the clear starter at scrum half for Ireland, whilst Boss and Reddan provide experienced back ups.

18.Conor Murray

19.Isaac Boss

20.Eoin Reddan

Fly Half

Again, at fly half there is a clear started in Sexton whilst Jackson provides good cover in addition to Madigan.

21.Johnny Sexton

22.Paddy Jackson



It looks likely Henshaw and Payne will continue in the centres, whilst D’Arcy is an experienced head and Madigan provides versatility.

23.Robbie Henshaw

24.Jared Payne

25.Ian Madigan

26.Gordon D’Arcy

Back Three

There are a number of options here, however the experienced heads get the nod on this occasion given the relatively new centre pairing.

27.Tommy Bowe

28.Simon Zebo

29.Luke Fitzgerald

30.Fergus McFadden

31.Rob Kearney