Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt has named 14 players from 2019 Heineken Champions Cup runners-up Leinster Rugby and 12 from semi-finalists Munster Rugby in his 31-man squad for the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan.
Leinster – who were beaten 20-10 by Saracens in the final at Newcastle’s St. James’ Park in May – provide the likes of fly-half Johnny Sexton, lock James Ryan, prop Cian Healy, full-back Rob Kearney and hooker Sean Cronin, who scored six tries in the Heineken Champions Cup last season.
However, Leinster lock Devin Toner – who has featured in all four of the Irish province’s European Cup-winning sides – misses out, with Munster’s Jean Kleyn and Tadhg Beirne getting the nod along with Ulster Rugby’s Iain Henderson in the second row.
Munster fly-half Joey Carbery, who scored 70 points in the Heineken Champions Cup last season, is also included in the 31-man list – as is his highly experienced provincial half-back partner, Conor Murray.
The 2019 Heineken Champions Cup semi-finalists will also be represented by wing duo Andrew Conway and Keith Earls – who scored two tries in their quarter-final win over Edinburgh Rugby – as well as flankers Peter O’Mahony and CJ Stander.
Ireland will be captained by Ulster hooker Rory Best, who is one of three players from the Belfast-based province selected by Schmidt, alongside Henderson and wing Jacob Stockdale.