Schmidt changes 12 but still no Henshaw for Ireland

Robbie Henshaw starts for Ireland on Sunday

Ireland coach Joe Schmidt has named his team to play Romania at the Olympic Stadium and resisted the temptation of rushing centre Robbie Henshaw back.

Henshaw, along with New Zealand-born Jared Payne, have been the Six Nations winning centre combinations for the last two years.

The star centre missed the opening 50-7 victory over Canada on Saturday due to a slight hamstring problem but Schmidt says that he was not prepared to 22-year-old’s participation at the tournament.

Schmidt admitted that Henshaw’s injury is probably a little worse than they had first thought and that with tw tough matches against Italy and France after Romania it was best to give the centre more time to recover.

Schmidt’s 12 changes to the side that played Canada include Darren Cabe coming in for Luke Fitzgerald who played Canada.

“It was just that at the start of the week we felt we had to take it a little bit easier than we first thought with Robbie,” said Schmidt.

“He is fully running now and we just felt we’d rather not push ahead.

“Soft tissue injuries can be quite complicated.

“If you get a re-injury on the same site then you are in a situation where his World Cup could be in doubt. So we’ve taken no risk.

“There are times to take risks but this is a great opportunity for Darren Cave.”

Romania were beaten 38-11 by France on Wednesday.

Ireland

Simon Zebo; Tommy Bowe, Jared Payne, Darren Cave, Keith Earls; Ian Madigan, Eoin Reddan; Jamie Heaslip (capt), Chris Henry, Jordi Murphy; Devin Toner, Donnacha Ryan; Nathan White, Richardt Strauss, Cian Healy

Replacements: Sean Cronin, Jack McGrath, Tadhg Furlong, Paul O’Connell, Sean O’Brien, Conor Murray, Paddy Jackson, Rob Kearney

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