Jennings to captain Baa-baas

Date published: May 26 2015

Leinster back-row Shane Jennings will captain the Barbarians against Ireland at Thomond Park on Thursday.

Jennings retires from the professional game in the coming weeks after a distinguished career in which he has won 13 caps for Ireland, PRO12 and European Cup titles for Leinster and a Premiership title with Leicester Tigers.

He captains a starting side containing nine different nationalities with 466 international appearances between them.

It includes his Leinster team-mates Zane Kirchner and Jimmy Gopperth with Ulster scrum-half Ruan Pienaar also starting for the famous invitation club celebrating its 125th anniversary this year.

Jennings said: “It’s an honour to lead out such an illustrious team. It’s a great highlight in my career and we’ll be determined to do the Barbarians' jersey justice against Ireland."

Head coach Robbie Deans has assembled a side with a sharp cutting edge containing the likes of Toulon’s leading try scorer David Smith, New Zealand’s Joe Rokocoko and British and Irish Lions wing Alex Cuthbert in the back-line.

Lions tighthead prop Adam Jones anchors a scrum containing a powerful second-row combination in Uruguay’s Rodrigo Capo Ortega and Georgia’s Konstantin Mikautadze.

Japan’s Ryu Koliniasi Holani is a dynamic number eight from Deans’ club side Panasonic Wild Knights.

Barbarians: 15 Zane Kirchner, 14 Alex Cuthbert, 13 Joe Rokocoko, 12 Wynand Olivier, 11 David Smith, 10 James Gopperth, 9 Ruan Pienaar, 8 Ryu Koliniasi Holani, 7 Gerhard Vosloo, 6 Shane Jennings (c), 5 Konstantin Mikautadze, 4 Rodrigo Capo Ortega, 3 Adam Jones, 2 Deon Fourie, 1 Roberto Tejerizo.
Replacements: 16 David Ward, 17 Saimone Taumoepeau, 18 Matias Diaz, 19 George Whitelock, 20 George Smith, 21 Tomas Cubelli, 22 Tusi Pisi, 23 Gio Aplon.

Date: Thursday, May 28
Venue: Thomond Park, Limerick
Kick-off: 19:45 local (18:45 GMT)
Referee: Greg Garner (England)
Assistant referees: tbc
TMO: tbc