PRO14: Provinces name their teams for derby clashes

Leinster coach Leo Cullen has named his team to take on Connacht in their PRO14 game tomorrow in the Sportsground at 5.15pm.

Cullen welcomes back a number of players including Seán O'Brien onto the bench from injury.

Rob Kearney comes in to the number 15 jersey with Jordan Larmour moving to the right wing from full-back as a result. James Lowe continues on the left wing.

Joe Tomane partners Garry Ringrose in the centre for the first time with Luke McGrath and captain Johnny Sexton.

Cian Healy, Seán Cronin and Tadhg Furlong are selected in the front row.

Meath's Devin Toner moves into third on the all-time Leinster appearances list, together with Leo Cullen, as he gets set to make his 221st appearance in blue. Toner and Cullen on 221 are behind Jamie Heaslip on 229 and Gordon D'Arcy on 261 caps for Leinster Rugby.

Australian international Scott Fardy joins Toner in the second row.

Rhys Ruddock, Josh van der Flier and Jack Conan complete the starting XV for Leo Cullen.

51 times Ireland capped Seán O'Brien is on the bench and in line for his first game since last April against Benetton.

Leinster team

Rob Kearney, Jordan Larmour, Garry Ringrose, Joe Tomane, James Lowe, Johnny Sexton (CAPTAIN), Luke McGrath, Cian Healy, Seán Cronin, Tadhg Furlong, Devin Toner, Scott Fardy, Rhys Ruddock, Josh van der Flier, Jack Conan

Replacements:

James Tracy, Ed Byrne, Andrew Porter, Ross Molony, Seán O'Brien, Nick McCarthy, Ross Byrne, Rory O'Loughlin

Connacht

Mayo native Dave Heffernan is set to captain Connacht against Leinster tomorrow.

Heffernan takes over the captaincy from Jarrad Butler who is ruled out through injury. Heffernan’s inclusion at hooker sees him continue as part of a front trio that includes props Denis Buckley and Finlay Bealham.

Butler’s replacement at openside Colby Fainga’a, makes his first start for Connacht who along with lock Ultan Dillane are the only change to the team that beat Scarlets last weekend. Fainga’a comes into a back row alongside blindside Sean O’Brien and Robin Copeland at number 8.

In the second row Dillane’s inclusion sees him for a familiar partnership with Quinn Roux.

Among the backs, Kieran Marmion and Jack Carty continue the half-back partnership, as do Bundee Aki and Tom Farrell in midfield.

Wingers Matt Healy and Cian Kelleher are also retained, as is Tiernan O’Halloran at full back.

Connacht team

Tiernan O’Halloran, Cian Kelleher, Tom Farrell, Bundee Aki, Matt Healy, Jack Carty, Kieran Marmion, (1-8) Denis Buckley, Dave Heffernan (C), Finlay Bealham, Ultan Dillane, Quinn Roux, Sean O’Brien, Colby Fainga’a, Robin Copeland.

Replacements:

Tom McCartney, Peter McCabe, Dominic Robertson-McCoy, James Cannon, Paul Boyle, Caolin Blade, Craig Ronaldson, Niyi Adeolokun.

Munster

Munster Head Coach Johann van Graan has made eight changes to the side beaten in Cardiff last week for the clash with Ulster tomorrow.

Alby Mathewson making his Munster debut at scrum-half as Keith Earls and Niall Scannell make their first starts of the season.

Having obtained a work permit in the standard timelines, Mathewson is named at scrum-half for his first Munster appearance.

Mike Haley, Dan Goggin, Earls, Mathewson, Dave Kilcoyne, Scannell, Billy Holland and Tommy O’Donnell all come into the side.

Haley starts at full-back with Andrew Conway and Earls on the flanks.

Rory Scannell partners Goggin in the centres with out-half Joey Carbery alongside Mathewson in the half-backs.

Kilcoyne, Niall Scannell and Stephen Archer make up the front row with Holland returning from injury to partner Tadhg Beirne in the second row.

Captain Peter O’Mahony, O’Donnell and CJ Stander complete the side.

Hooker Kevin O’Byrne and prop Ciaran Parker are both set to see their first PRO14 action of the season off the bench with O’Byrne returning from a calf injury.

Munster team

Mike Haley; Andrew Conway, Dan Goggin, Rory Scannell, Keith Earls; Joey Carbery, Alby Mathewson; Dave Kilcoyne, Niall Scannell, Stephen Archer; Tadhg Beirne, Billy Holland; Peter O’Mahony (C), Tommy O’Donnell, CJ Stander.

Replacements:

Kevin O’Byrne, James Cronin, Ciaran Parker, Jean Kleyn, Arno Botha, Duncan Williams, Ian Keatley, Sammy Arnold.

Ulster

Ulster prop Andrew Warwick will become the latest player to reach the 100 cap milestone in tomorrow’s clash at Munster.

27-year-old Warwick, who made his debut against Cardiff towards the tail end of the 2013/14 season, will start at loosehead prop, with fellow Ballymena RFC clubman Adam McBurney selected for his first start of the season beside him at hooker. Ross Kane completes the front row.

Alan O’Connor will captain the side from the second row, with Iain Henderson returning to partner him in the engine room.

In the back row, flankers Matthew Rea and Nick Timoney are named at blindside and openside respectively, with Jean Deysel packing down at number 8.

John Cooney returns from the scalp laceration sustained in the win over Southern Kings a fortnight ago to join Billy Burns at half-back.

Angus Curtis will also earn his first start of the season, as he is given the nod to partner Darren Cave in midfield.

Wingers Angus Kernohan and Craig Gilroy join Peter Nelson in the back three as the fullback runs out for the 50th time in an Ulster jersey.

On the bench, John Andrew, Eric O’Sullivan and Tom O’Toole will provide the front row cover, with Kieran Treadwell and Clive Ross named as the additional forward options. Double try-scorer from last week Dave Shanahan will cover scrum-half, while the Abbey Insurance Ulster Rugby Academy duo of Michael Lowry and James Hume are set to earn their first Ulster senior caps if called upon.

Ulster teamPeter Nelson, Craig Gilroy, Darren Cave, Angus Curtis, Angus Kernohan, Billy Burns, John Cooney; Andrew Warwick, Adam McBurney, Ross Kane, Alan O’Connor (Capt), Iain Henderson, Matthew Rea, Nick Timoney, Jean Deysel.

Replacements: John Andrew, Eric O’Sullivan, Tom O’Toole, Kieran Treadwell, Clive Ross, Dave Shanahan, Michael Lowry, James Hume.

More in this Section

Boxer Patrick Day dies of head injuries sustained in fightBoxer Patrick Day dies of head injuries sustained in fight

Schmidt backs O’Mahony to deliver under pressure of World Cup quarter-finalSchmidt backs O’Mahony to deliver under pressure of World Cup quarter-final

#RWC2019 Quarter-finals: Match previews and team stats#RWC2019 Quarter-finals: Match previews and team stats

England drop Ford, name Farrell at fly-half for Australia quarter-finalEngland drop Ford, name Farrell at fly-half for Australia quarter-final


Lifestyle

Leopard print midi dresses and sequins swirled beneath glossy goddess hair and golden headbands as the great and the good of Cork gathered for ieStyle Live.Leopard print and sequins to the fore at inaugural #IEStyleLive event

You have a long half-term break ahead of you all, and there’s only so much screen time anyone in the family can handle. Everyone is going to need a book-break at some point or another.We reviewed some of the best new books to keep kids entertained over half-term

Sexual politics, snideput-downs and family rivalries are fuelling the trouble brewing in a small Midlands town.Charlie Murphy and Pat Shortt star in new Irish film 'Dark lies the Island'

Robert Hume tells of the eccentric MP for Athboy, Co. Meath – born 300 years ago this month – who thought he was a teapot, and was afraid his spout might break off.A strange brew of a man: The MP for Meath who believed he was a teapot

More From The Irish Examiner