The Connacht tighthead was born in Australia

Finlay Bealham’s progress as a tighthead prop has made many stand up and take notice in the Ireland squad.

His form for Connacht has helped put him in the frame for more caps in the green shirt.

Read more: Ireland Six Nations squad

Ten things you should know about Finlay Bealham

1. Finlay Bealham was born on 9 October 1991 in Canberra, Australia. He stands at 6ft 2.5in tall (1.89m) and weighs in at 123kg.

2. Bealham played rugby league at a young age in Australia before later focusing on union from the age of 16.

3. He played for the Australian Schoolboys’ ‘A’ side in 2009 against Tonga and New Zealand. Bealham attended St Edmund’s College, the alma mater of Wallabies legends George Gregan and Matt Giteau.

4. Bealham qualifies for Ireland through his Northern Irish grandmother from Enniskillen, who passed in away in 2012.

Finlay Bealham

Finlay Bealham was handed his first Six Nations start against Wales in 2023 (INPHO)

5. He is related to former British heavyweight boxing champion Gordon Ferris.

5. He moved to Ireland in 2010, having not made the Brumbies academy, aged 19 and first played for Belfast Harlequins before joining the Connacht academy having starred for Ireland U20 in the 2011 Junior World Cup

6. Bealham played for the Emerging Ireland squad in 2015 before making his senior Ireland debut against Italy in the 2016 Six Nations

7. He was part of the Barbarians squad that faced England at Twickenham in 2019

8. Bealham went two-and-a-half years without seeing his family amid the pandemic, before a tearful reunion after Ireland’s win over England at Twickenham in the 2022 Guinness Six Nations. After coming on for the final seven minutes, Bealham crossed for the all-important bonus-point try.

9. Bealham missed the opening Test of Ireland’s historic series win in New Zealand in 2022 after testing positive for Covid

10. While often being Tadhg Furlong’s understudy, Bealham does not see himself as a back-up, telling the42: “You are always pushing to be the best version of yourself. Tadhg’s obviously a world-class player and he’s a British and Irish Lion but I need to be pushing him and making him better and making myself better.

“I wouldn’t see myself as a back-up player. I can fill that role and I keep pushing myself and finding new limits to where I can go.”

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