Andrew Trimble named in Ireland World Cup training squad
Fit-again Ulster wing Andrew Trimble is named in a 45-man Ireland training squad ahead of the Rugby World Cup.
Trimble has not played since sustaining a toe injury in a Pro12 match against Glasgow last October and missed Ireland's Six Nations-winning campaign.
Uncapped Leinster forwards Jack Conan and Tadhg Furlong are included as coach Joe Schmidt ramps up preparations for the World Cup in September.
Ireland will play four warm-up matches before Schmidt reduces his squad to 31.
Leinster number eight Conan, Ulster hooker Rob Herring and Leinster back Noel Reid impressed for Emerging Ireland in their tournament in Georgia this month and are rewarded with call-ups.
There is no place, however, for Rhys Ruddock who fractured his arm playing for Emerging Ireland against Uruguay last week.
Ulster back-row Chris Henry is again included, having marked his international return from a mini stroke last November with a try for Ireland against the Barbarians last month.
Munster out half Ian Keatley, who started Ireland's Six Nations victory over Italy in Rome earlier this year, has been omitted with Johnny Sexton, Paddy Jackson and Ian Madigan selected ahead of him.
The timely return of Trimble, who was named Ireland's player of the year in 2014, is a welcome addition to the squad ahead of this autumn's World Cup in England.
"The squad selection has been a long process with some very tight decisions," said Schmidt.
"Some injured players who are getting close to full fitness have been included while others have missed out due to prolonged absence or lack of opportunity to demonstrate their full Test match readiness."
Ireland take on Wales in Cardiff on Saturday, 8 August before hosting Scotland a week later at the Aviva Stadium.
On Saturday, 29 August Wales come to the Aviva Stadium with the final warm-up game taking place in Twickenham against England on Saturday, 5 September.
Ireland training squad:
Forwards: Michael Bent (Leinster), Tadhg Furlong (Leinster), Cian Healy (Leinster), David Kilcoyne (Munster), Jack McGrath (Leinster), Martin Moore (Leinster), Mike Ross (Leinster);Rory Best (Ulster), Sean Cronin (Leinster), Rob Herring (Ulster), Richardt Strauss (Leinster);Iain Henderson (Ulster), Paul O'Connell (Toulon), Donnacha Ryan (Munster), Devin Toner (Leinster), Dan Tuohy (Ulster), Chris Henry (Ulster);Jamie Heaslip (Leinster), Jordi Murphy (Leinster), Sean O'Brien (Leinster), Tommy O'Donnell (Munster), Peter O'Mahony (Munster), Jack Conan (Leinster).
Backs: Isaac Boss (Leinster), Kieran Marmion (Connacht), Conor Murray (Munster), Eoin Reddan (Leinster);Paddy Jackson (Ulster), Ian Madigan (Leinster), Jonathan Sexton (Leinster);Darren Cave (Ulster), Gordon D'Arcy (Unattached), Keith Earls (Munster), Robbie Henshaw (Connacht), Jared Payne (Ulster), Noel Reid (Leinster);Tommy Bowe (Ulster), Luke Fitzgerald (Leinster), Craig Gilroy (Ulster), David Kearney (Leinster), Fergus McFadden (Leinster), Andrew Trimble (Ulster), Simon Zebo (Munster); Felix Jones (Munster), Rob Kearney (Leinster).