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Ireland v Australia: Five Ulster men in for Rory Best's 100th appearance

By Jonathan Bradley

Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt has had to shuffle his deck for the side's final international of the year against Australia in Dublin tomorrow.

It will be a historic day for captain Rory Best as he becomes the first Ulster player to reach a century of Test caps and the hooker will be joined in the starting line-up by four of his provincial team-mates.

Paddy Jackson takes over for the injured Johnny Sexton while lock Iain Henderson starts to freshen up the pack.

Jared Payne and Andrew Trimble are retained in the back-line but elsewhere Schmidt has been forced into change.

Leinster's Garry Ringrose is in at inside centre, preferred to Ulster's Luke Marshall, while Simon Zebo is only fit for the bench with Keith Earls taking his place on the wing.

Despite being named in the side, Rob Kearney and CJ Stander must still prove their fitness after concussions in the bruising encounter with New Zealand last weekend.

"Rob trained for the first time (yesterday)," said Schmidt.

"We just trained him away quietly because that's how you progress them back. He's still got another 48 hours to really build himself into this weekend's match. Same with CJ Stander."

Belfast Telegraph


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