Henshaw, Bealham and Dillane released to Connacht for visit of league leaders

Henshaw, Bealham and Dillane released to Connacht for visit of league leaders

Ireland International Robbie Henshaw will line out at the Sportsground for the second week in a row after he was released from international camp to play for his province.

Forwards Finlay Bealham and Ultan Dillane, who were two of five uncapped players drafted into Joe Schmidt’s Six Nations squad, have also been released for tomorrow’s game.

Bealham, who will start at tighthead prop, is one of six frontline changes made by Pat Lam from last week, while lock Dillane takes a place on the bench.

Against league leaders Scarlets, there will be a new half back pairing with Connacht born duo Jack Carty and Caolin Blade both named to start in a backline averaging just 23 years of age.

Tom McCartney is promoted from the bench to join Denis Buckley and Bealham in the front row, while George Naoupu and Jake Heenan are both named to start in the pack.

“While we were pleased with last week’s performance, we know that Scarlets present a completely different challenge,” said head coach Pat Lam. “They are top of the league and will travel with confidence especially with their PRO12 form away from home.

“We are back at home on a Saturday afternoon for the second week in a row and we’re really looking forward to playing in front of a packed out Sportsground before we take a short break.

“A win would keep us in the ‘top four’ where we have been all season and would sign off this block of 16 consecutive games very nicely for us and our supporters.”

Connacht v Scarlets at the Sportsground, Saturday, January 30 kick-off 3pm.

Connacht team: Tiernan O’Halloran, Danie Poolman, Robbie Henshaw, Bundee Aki, Matt Healy, Jack Carty, Caolin Blade; Denis Buckley, Tom McCartney, Finlay Bealham, George Naoupu, Aly Muldowney, John Muldoon - capt., Jake Heenan, Eoghan Masterson.

Replacements: Dave Heffernan, Ronan Loughney, Rodney Ah You, Ultan Dillane, James Connolly, Ian Porter, Craig Ronaldson, Rory Parata.

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