Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Porter and Farrell get first Six Nations starts for Wales clash

Porter and Farrell get first Six Nations starts for Wales clash

Porter and Farrell get first Six Nations starts for Wales clash

Andrew Porter will have to fill the sizeable boots of British and Irish Lions star Tadgh Furlong when he makes his first Six Nations start against Wales at Lansdowne Road on Saturday (at 9:15pm Cambodian time).

The 22-year-old, a relative novice at tighthead prop, impressed against Italy after Furlong had to go off in the fourth minute with a hamstring problem and will be joined by centre Chris Farrell, who comes in for the injured Robbie Henshaw, in making their first Six Nations starts.

Other changes from the starting XV that thrashed Italy 56-19 to make it two wins from two see CJ Stander return at No 8 instead of Jack Conan, James Ryan replace the injured Iain Henderson in the second row, and veteran prop Cian Healy come in for Jack McGrath.

“Tadgh was close but we decided not to risk him and to wait for the Scotland match in a fortnight,” said Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt.

“Andrew [Porter] did a sterling job against Italy and acquitted himself really well. This will be a step up but it is a learning process for him and nowhere else better to do so than against a tough team like Wales.”

Porter, who will win his fifth cap since his debut against the United States last year, began life as a loosehead prop but switched to tighthead for his province Leinster just last term.

The 76 minutes the hulking Porter (120kg, 18st 12lbs) played against Italy is the most he has spent on the pitch in any game since he broke through into the Leinster first team last season.

Farrell-Aki pairing

Farrell, who only made his debut against Fiji last November, will form an inexperienced partnership in the centres with Bundee Aki, although the latter sparkled in the Italy match as the New Zealand-born back scored his first try for his adopted country while setting up another.

“Losing three world class players [Henderson, Henshaw and Furlong] is tough but we are focused on those who are playing,” said Schmidt.

“Chris Farrell has been a long-term project. We are short on experience, they are welcoming back three Lions while we are losing three. Not ideal but nowhere better to carry on the learning curve.”

Ryan sat out the Italy game with a niggle he picked up in his impressive Six Nations debut against France and will be alongside Leinster team-mate Devin Toner.

Schmidt has omitted Jordan Larmour completely from the matchday 23, the talented 20-year-old perhaps paying the price for missing tackles in two of Italy’s tries after coming on for his Test debut. The more battle-hardened Fergus McFadden takes his spot on the replacements bench.

The hard core of experience in the side, which will be needed against a Wales outfit who are unfortunate not to be unbeaten themselves, is there with Rory Best skippering them in his 109th Test for his country, and the world class half-back pairing of Johnny Sexton and Conor Murray once again pulling the strings.

Schmidt has not lost a home Six Nations match since assuming the reins after the 2013 edition although the Welsh came close to beating the Irish in a 16-16 draw in 2016.

MOST VIEWED

  • Cambodia rejects UN rights claim

    Cambodia's Permanent Mission to the UN Office in Geneva on Friday hit back at David Kaye, the UN special rapporteur on the Promotion and Protection of the Right to Freedom of Opinion and Expression after he raised concerns over the repression of free speech and

  • Snaring may spawn diseases

    The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) has warned that snaring of animals has become a crisis that poses a serious risk to wildlife in Southeast Asia and could spawn the transmission of zoonotic diseases to humans. Its July 9 report entitled Silence of the Snares: Southeast Asia’

  • Ex-party leader, gov’t critic named as secretary of state

    A former political party leader known for being critical of the government has been appointed secretary of state at the Ministry of Rural Development, a royal decree dated July 9 said. Sourn Serey Ratha, the former president of the Khmer Power Party (KPP), told The Post

  • Residence cards set for over 80,000 immigrants

    The Ministry of Interior plans to grant residence cards to more than 80,000 immigrants to better keep track of them. The ministry announced the plan on July 10, following the results of an immigration census. “An inter-ministerial committee and many operational working groups have been set up

  • Kingdom produces PPE gear

    Medical supplies from Cambodia have been donated to member countries of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) to assist in the fight against Covid-19, said an ADB report published on July 9. The report stated that the supplies were donated as a response to global efforts to

  • Kingdom, US vow stronger ties

    At an academic forum on Saturday to celebrate 70 years of Cambodia-US diplomatic ties, Cambodian researchers and officials expressed hope of encouraging US investments and for that country to deepen and improve its bilateral relations. Held at the Royal Academy of Cambodia, it reviewed the past 70

  • Fifteen Cambodians from Saudi get Covid-19

    The Ministry of Health on Sunday confirmed 15 more imported cases of Covid. The 15 men ‒ all Cambodian aged 21 to 33 ‒ arrived from Saudi Arabia on Friday via a connecting flight in Malaysia. They were travelling with 79 other passengers, three of them women. The ministry said 80 of the

  • Ministry requests school opening

    The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport on Thursday said it would request a decision from Prime Minister Hun Sen to allow a small number of schools to reopen next month. Ministry spokesman Ros Soveacha said if the request is granted, higher-standard schools will reopen

  • Kingdom eyes India FTA, China deal set for August

    Cambodia is studying the possibility of establishing a bilateral free trade agreement (FTA) with India to open a new market with the second-largest regional economy. This comes as an FTA with China is scheduled to be signed next month while similar negotiations with South Korea

  • Judge lands in court after crashing into alleged thief

    Sen Sok district police on Thursday sent a Koh Kong Provincial Court judge to the Phnom Penh Municipal Court on manslaughter charges after he crashed his car into a woman riding a motorbike on Wednesday, killing her. District police chief Hour Meng Vang told The