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O'Connor's conundrum

Published 25/03/2014 | 02:30

Five into three won't go – two of these Leinster internationals are likely to miss out on the Munster clash this weekend

BACK THREE

Rob Kearney

Test caps: 57

Leinster apps/tries this season: 11 (0)

One of the first names on the teamsheet, probably the only back-three player assured of his place this week.

 

Luke Fitzgerald

Caps: 28

Leinster apps/tries this season: 15 (5)

On the comeback trail after missing the Six Nations, Fitzgerald scored two tries in a strong display last weekend.

 

Dave Kearney

Caps: 7

Leinster apps/tries this season: 14 (2)

Started all of Ireland's games on the back of fine Leinster form and played consistently well throughout the Six Nations.

 

Zane Kirchner

Caps: 28

Leinster apps/tries this season: 16 (2)

The Springbok replaced Isa Nacewa this season and has done well in flashes, but could find himself on the outside looking in over the next fortnight.

 

Fergus McFadden

Caps: 26

Leinster apps/tries this season: 8 (0)

Injury consigned him to the bench for the Six Nations, while he has been used in the centre twice by Leinster recently.

 

BACK-ROW

Kevin McLaughlin

Caps: 8

Leinster apps this season: 12

Played against the All Blacks in November, but has since lost his place to Rhys Ruddock in many of Leinster's big games.

 

Rhys Ruddock

Caps: 2

Leinster apps this season: 17

Finally won his second cap during the Six Nations; Matt O'Connor is a big fan and he is beginning to fulfil his promise.

 

Shane Jennings

Caps: 13

Leinster apps this season: 15

A leader of Leinster's defensive effort, he is under pressure from Jordi Murphy.

 

Jordi Murphy

Caps: 2

Leinster apps this season: 15

Can cover openside or No 8; the Blackrock graduate forced his way on to Ireland's bench during the Six Nations.

 

Jamie Heaslip

Caps: 70

Leinster apps this season: 10

Like Kearney, a guaranteed starter when fit – which is usually every week.

Irish Independent

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