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Ireland unchanged to face Italy in Rome

  • Story Highlights
  • Ireland name unchanged line-up for Sunday's Six Nations clash against Italy
  • Coach Declan Kidney keeps players that defeated France 30-21 on Saturday
  • Thom and Max Evans recalled to Scotland side for Saturday clash with France
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(CNN) -- Ireland have named an unchanged line-up for their Six Nations rugby clash against Italy in Rome on Sunday.

Ireland players celebrate Gordon D'Arcy's try in Saturday's victory over France.

Ireland players celebrate Gordon D'Arcy's try in Saturday's victory over France.

Head coach Declan Kidney has retained the side which registered Ireland's first victory over France for six years with Saturday's 30-21 triumph at Croke Park.

Paddy Wallace was thought to be under threat for the inside center duties from Gordon D'Arcy but Kidney has opted against making a change.

D'Arcy marked his Test return from a broken arm which kept him out of the game for 10 months with the crucial final try against Les Bleus after appearing as a substitute for Wallace. Wallace left the pitch in the first half with blood streaming from an eye wound, which required stitches, but has been given the all-clear to face Italy.

Captain Brian O'Driscoll will earn his 90th cap on Sunday while prop John Hayes will equal the current Irish record of 91 appearances held by Malcolm O'Kelly, who is on the bench.

The odds on Ireland winning their first championship since 1985 shortened significantly in response to their thrilling victory over France.

Italy, who were punished for an error-strewn display with an 36-11 defeat to England at Twickenham, are not expected to put an early spanner in the works.

Ireland's last trip to Rome in 2007 saw them triumph 51-24 but it was a bittersweet experience as they conceded a try on the stroke of full-time that handed France the championship on points difference.

Meanwhile, Scotland coach Frank Hadden has recalled brothers Thom and Max Evans to the side for Saturday's clash with France.

The Glasgow stars were controversially omitted from the starting line-up for Sunday's opening defeat to Wales, with Thom not even in the 22.

Max came off the bench to score Scotland's only try in the 26-13 loss and is one of five changes to the side comprehensively beaten by the Grand Slam champions.

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