Picking An Ireland Team To Take On France In Their Six Nations Opener

Not long to go now.

The 2018 NatWest Six Nations is set to kick off in under a month with Ireland set to take on France at the Stade de France in their tournament opener.

After a hugely successful November series, with Ireland winning all three of their Tests, Joe Schmidt and his men will no doubt head into this year’s tournament with an air of confidence about them.

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When you consider Munster, Ulster and Leinster also all did the double over English opposition in the Champions Cup last month, the Irish are almost joint favourites with England heading into round one.

It could all come crashing down however, if they can’t get off to a winning start in Paris. The French are wounded animals at the moment, and have a completely new coaching ticket. But they’re always a threat when at home.

Anyway, here’s the side we reckon should start against the French…

Ireland Team to take on France.

15. Rob Kearney
14. Keith Earls
13. Robbie Henshaw
12. Bundee Aki
11. Jacob Stockdale
10. Johnny Sexton
9. Conor Murray

1. Cian Healy
2. Rory Best (c)
3. Tadhg Furlong
4. Iain Henderson
5. Devin Toner
6. Peter O’Mahony
7. Sean O’Brien
8. CJ Stander

Replacements: Rob Herring, Jack McGrath, John Ryan, James Ryan, Josh van der Flier, Luke McGrath, Ian Keatley, Andrew Conway

To be fair it’s difficult to argue with most of the selections above. The big decision comes in the centre. Previously I thought maybe Ringrose should start, but I’m starting to lean towards Aki and his physicality for the French game. Lets see how both go over the new few weeks for their provinces.

There’s a lot of players knocking on the door right now to be fair, including the likes of Andrew Conway, Josh van der Flier and Tiernan O’Halloran, so it’s a big month ahead.

What side would you go with? Let us know in the comments section on social.