Kearney’s back for Ireland but Payne and Zebo are absent

Rob Kearney

Jared Payne and Simon Zebo are the notable absentees from the Ireland side that faces France in Cardiff on Sunday.

Payne misses out through a combination of his foot injury and the form of Keith Earls who will partner Robbie Henshaw in the centre.

Rob Kearney does return at full-back, and there's no place in the matchday 23 for Simon Zebo.

In the pack, Devin Toner comes in for Iain Henderson in the second row.

The team in full sees a back three of Rob Kearney, Tommy Bowe and Dave Kearney, with Henshaw and Earls in the centre.

There's a front three of Cian Healy, Rory Best and Mike Ross, with Toner and captain Paul O'Connell in the second row.

Peter O'Mahony is blindside, Sean O'Brien openside, and Jamie Heaslip is number 8.

Richardt Strauss, Jack McGrath and Nathan White provide front row cover from the bench, with Iain Henderson and Chris Henry also providing insurance for the pack.

Eoin Reddan, Ian Madigan and Luke Fitzgerald complete the replacements bench.