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Farrell makes seven changes for Italy game

Ireland head coach Andy Farrell has rung the changes for Saturday's Six Nations game against Ital...

Ireland head coach Andy Farrell has rung the changes for Saturday's Six Nations game against Italy in Rome.

Captain Johnny Sexton returns to the starting 15 in one of seven changes from the defeat to France at the Aviva Stadium.

Conor Murray is ruled out once again due to a hamstring problem so Sexton partners Jamison Gibson Park in the halfbacks.

Robbie Henshaw, who earns his 50th cap for Ireland, forms the centre pairing with Garry Ringrose once again.

Hugo Keenan retains the number 15 jersey with James Lowe on the left wing and Jordan Larmour coming in on the right hand side in place of Keith Earls.

Dave Kilcoyne, Ronan Kelleher and Tadhg Furlong all come into the front row, while James Ryan returns to the second row to partner Iain Henderson.

Tadhg Beirne switches to the backrow alongside Will Connors and CJ Stander.

Craig Casey, who was on the bench for the game against France, and Ryan Baird are in line for their first international caps in Stadio Olimpico on Saturday afternoon.

The other replacements for the weekend are Rob Herring, Cian Healy, Andrew Porter, Jack Conan, Billy Burns and Keith Earls.

Ireland team to play Italy:

15. Hugo Keenan
14. Jordan Larmour
13. Garry Ringrose
12. Robbie Henshaw
11. James Lowe
10. Jonathan Sexton  CAPTAIN
Jamison Gibson Park

1. Dave Kilcoyne
2. Ronan Kelleher
3. Tadhg Furlong
4. Iain Henderson
5. James Ryan
6. Tadhg Beirne
7. Will Connors
8. CJ Stander


16. Rob Herring
17. Cian Healy
18. Andrew Porter
19. Ryan Baird (uncapped)
20. Jack Conan
21. Craig Casey (uncapped)
22. Billy Burns
23. Keith Earls

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Andy Farrell Ireland Italy Johnny Sexton Six Nations