Six Nations 2020: Scrum-half John Cooney called into Ireland squad

John Cooney
John Cooney has 11 senior international caps

Ulster scrum-half John Cooney has been called into the Ireland squad to provide cover for Jamison Gibson-Park.

Cooney was one of the most notable omissions from Andy Farrell's 35-man squad, having featured in all three of Ireland's Six Nations games in February.

Gibson-Park reported hamstring tightness after making his debut in Saturday's win over Italy but remains with the squad as they prepare to face France in a potential tournament decider this weekend.

Cooney will link up with the Ireland panel on Monday having played in Ulster's Pro14 win over Dragons on Sunday.

A scintillating 2019-20 season up until the pandemic forced rugby's suspension had established Cooney as Ireland's second-choice scrum-half, behind Conor Murray.

He was in line to start against Italy in March before the game was postponed, but a loss of form after the restart in August saw Gibson-Park and Connacht's Kieran Marmion overtake Cooney in the pecking order.

It has also been confirmed that centre Garry Ringrose will miss the rest of the autumn international window, having broken his jaw in the first half against Italy.

The 25-year-old is set for six weeks on the sideline after colliding with wing Edoardo Padovani's knee in Dublin.

Wing Keith Earls, who was ruled out of the initial squad by a back injury, is finishing his recovery at the IRFU's High Performance Centre, where the international team are based, with a decision on his availability to be made within the next few days.

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