Six Nations: Murphy equipped to face England says O'Mahony

Jordi Murphy attempts to get past Italy's Joshua Furno
Jordi Murphy started at number eight in Ireland's opening Six Nations win over Italy
RBS Six Nations: Ireland v England
Venue: Aviva Stadium, Dublin Date: Sunday, 1 March Kick-off: 15:00 GMT Coverage: Live on BBC TV, HD, Red Button, Radio 5 live, Radio Ulster FM, the BBC Sport website, mobile, the BBC Sport app and Connected TV.

Ireland flanker Peter O'Mahony believes Jordi Murphy has the credentials to compete with England's back row in Sunday's Six Nations game in Dublin.

Murphy, 23, is expected to start at number eight for the Irish in place of injured Lions star Jamie Heaslip.

Leinster back row Murphy played in the opening win over Italy when Heaslip was ruled out by a shoulder injury.

"Jordi is a quality player. He's well rounded, well able to carry hard and do the grunt work," said O'Mahony.

Murphy started on the bench for Ireland's 18-11 win over France but came on for Heaslip, who will miss the England game as he is still recuperating from the back injury inflicted by Pascal Pape's knee in that victory.

And Murphy's selection prospects have been strengthened by Tommy O'Donnell still battling the after-effects of concussion.

If Murphy, who has six caps, is picked, he will almost certainly join his Leinster team-mate Sean O'Brien and Munster captain O'Mahony in the back row.

Ireland's 2015 Six Nations matches
7 FebruaryItaly 3-26 Ireland
14 FebruaryIreland 18-11 France
1 MarchEngland (h)
14 MarchWales (a)
21 MarchScotland (a)

The trio will face the task of trying to subdue England's likely back-row combination of James Haskell, Chris Robshaw and Billy Vunipola.

"Jordi's got a good set of skills," added O'Mahony.

"He's got a lovely pass and he's a good line-out option. He's a quality all-rounded player."

Despite his confidence in Murphy, O'Mahony acknowledges that Ireland will face a huge test of their credentials against the England pack.

"They are physical guys. They are always looking to get them on the front foot. Whenever England are on the front foot, it stems from their pack."

Murphy made a late cameo off the bench in Ireland's 13-10 defeat by England at Twickenham in last season's Six Nations, the last time head coach Joe Schmidt's men have suffered a loss.

Ireland will equal their all-time record with a 10th consecutive victory this weekend and O'Mahony believes Murphy is a different player a year on from that Twickenham defeat.

"I think he has come on since then. He's developed hugely," said O'Mahony.

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