Ireland wait on Best
5 Oct 2011
Ireland are sweating on the fitness of hooker Rory Best, but have otherwise named an unchanged side to face Wales in the quarter-final in Wellington.
Best sustained an injury in their final pool match and will be given until Friday to prove his fitness. Best, Sean Cronin or Damien Varley have all been listed as possible starters in number two or 16.
The team includes Ireland’s most experienced second row partnership ever, Donncha O’Callaghan and Paul O’Connell, who will play together for Ireland for the 43rd time. In the centres Gordon D’Arcy and Brian O’Driscoll extend their world record to 47 matches together.
Ireland have never got past this stage before in four attempts, losing to Australia and France (both twice). If they do so this time, they will extend their best ever winning streak at a Rugby World Cup to five matches.
Ireland - 15. Rob Kearney, 14. Tommy Bowe, 13. Brian O’Driscoll (c), 12. Gordon D’Arcy, 11. Keith Earls, 10. Ronan O’Gara9. Conor Murray, 8. Jamie Heaslip, 7. Sean O’Brien, 6. Stephen Ferris, 5. Paul O’Connell, 4. Donncha O’Callaghan, 3. Mike Ross, 2. TBA, 1. Cian Healy.
Subs: 16. TBA, 17. Tom Court, 18. Donnacha Ryan, 19. Denis Leamy, 20. Eoin Reddan, 21. Jonathan Sexton, 22. Andrew Trimble