Leinster bolster pack for Ospreys with Healy, Cronin and Ross, while Zebo and O'Donnell return for Munster
Published 04/03/2016 | 12:18
Leinster and Munster have been able to call on a number of key internationals for their Pro 12 clashes with the Ospreys and Scarlets respectively.
Leinster coach Leo Cullen has named a formidable frontrow for their Guinness PRO12 encounter with the Ospreys at the RDS Arena tomorrow (KO 3pm)
There are seven changes in total to the starting XV that picked up a bonus point away to Zebre last Sunday with Cian Healy in line to win his 150th cap for the province and with Dominic Ryan in line to win his 100th cap from the bench.
Zane Kirchner will start at full back for his 60th cap for the province with Fergus McFadden coming in on the right wing, while captain Isa Nacewa continues on the left.
Ben Te'o and Garry Ringrose are once again chosen in the centre for the seventh time as a partnership.
There is a new half back pairing with Eoin Reddan and Ian Madigan starting at nine and ten.
There are four changes in the pack with a completely new front row of Cian Healy, Sean Cronin and Mike Ross.
Ross Molony and Mick Kearney continue in the second row while in the back row Rhys Ruddock starts at blind side with Dan Leavy and Jordi Murphy continuing from open side and number eight.
Leinster meanwhile have also confirmed that just over 30,000 tickets have now been sold for the Munster match in the Aviva Stadium on the 2nd April.
15. Zane Kirchner
14. Fergus McFadden
13. Garry Ringrose
12. Ben Te'o
11. Isa Nacewa
10. Ian Madigan
9. Eoin Reddan
1. Cian Healy
2. Sean Cronin
3. Mike Ross
4. Ross Molony
5. Mick Kearney
6. Rhys Ruddock
7. Dan Leavy
8. Jordi Murphy
Meanwhile, Anthony Foley has made three changes for the team that narrowly beat Treviso for tomorrow's visit of the Scarlets to Thomond Park (KO 7 45), two of which are the selections of Simon Zebo and Tommy O'Donnell at left wing and open side
The first of two changes to the pack sees hooker Niall Scannell join Dave Kilcoyne and John Ryan in the front row. Mark Chisholm and captain Billy Holland continue in the second row, while in the back row, O'Donnell returns at 7 with Dave O'Callaghan and Jack O'Donoghue switching to 6 and 8 respectively.
Zebo starts on the left wing in an otherwise unchanged backline. Duncan Williams and Ian Keatley form the half-back partnership and Rory Scannell makes his tenth consecutive start at inside centre in partnering Francis Saili in the midfield.
Winger Darren Sweetnam and fullback Andrew Conway again complete the starting XV.
If called upon from the bench, recent long-term injury returnee Johnny Holland will make his first appearance of the season.
In other news, this week saw Mario Sagario called up to the Uruguayan international squad for the Americas Rugby Championship. The Munster tighthead will start against the USA in Montevideo tomorrow.
Munster: Andrew Conway; Darren Sweetnam, Francis Saili, Rory Scannell, Simon Zebo; Ian Keatley, Duncan Williams; Dave Kilcoyne, Niall Scannell, John Ryan; Mark Chisholm, Billy Holland – capt.; Dave O'Callaghan, Tommy O'Donnell, Jack O'Donoghue.
Replacements: Mike Sherry, James Cronin, Stephen Archer, Dave Foley, Robin Copeland, Cathal Sheridan, Johnny Holland, David Johnston.