Leinster flanker Rhys Ruddock to captain Ireland Wolfhounds
Last Updated: 23/01/14 3:25pm
Rhy Ruddock: Son of former Wales coach Mike
Rhys Ruddock has been confirmed as captain of the Ireland Wolfhounds for Saturday's clash with England Saxons at Gloucester.
The Leinster flanker, the son of former Wales coach and current Ireland U20s boss Mike Ruddock, will lead out a strong line-up at Kingsholm.
Ruddock, who won his only senior cap on the 2010 summer tour of Australia, will start alongside Leinster team-mate Richardt Strauss just three months after the hooker underwent heart surgery.
Fit-again Ulster wing Craig Gilroy also starts, while Munster wing Simon Zebo is among the replacements as he as he steps up his return from a long-term foot injury.
Connacht's Kieran Marmion is also on the bench after he escaped suspension following his citing in the Heineken Cup defeat to Saracens last weekend.
A Heineken Cup disciplinary committee ruled Marmion's act of foul play did not warrant a red card, leaving him free to face the Saxons.
Leinster tighthead Martin Moore starts in the front row, with former Gloucester lock Dan Tuohy making a return to his old stomping ground.
Cardiff Blues' Munster-bound number eight Robin Copeland has a chance to impress, while Isaac Boss and Ian Madigan form an experienced half-back duo.
Ireland Wolfhounds: 15 Jones, 14 McFadden, 13 Henshaw, 12 Cave, 11 Gilroy, 10 Madigan, 9 Boss; 1 Kilcoyne, 2 Herring, 3 Moore, 4 Henderson, 5 Tuohy, 6 Ruddock, 7 O'Donnell, 8 Copeland
Replacements: 16 Strauss, 17 McGrath, 18 Archer, 19 Diack, 20 Murphy, 21 Marmion, 22 Keatley, 23 Zebo