Saturday 24 February 2018

Pro14 team news: Australian makes Leinster debut while Kieran Keane names first Connacht side

Leinster's Scott Fardy will make his debut against Dragons
Leinster's Scott Fardy will make his debut against Dragons

Thirty-three-year-old Australian Scott Fardy will make his Leinster debut away to the Dragons in the Pro14 tomorrow (3.15).

Also making his debut is 20-year-old Jordan Larmour who will start on the left wing while Rob Kearney is back after almost eight months on the sidelines.

Isa Nacewa will captain the side from the centre with newly capped Irish international Rory O’Loughlin beside him in the number 13 jersey.

Jamison Gibson-Park and Ross Byrne pick up where they left off in Donnybrook last week at nine and ten.

In the pack Cian Healy makes his first appearance of the season having not featured in any of the pre-season matches. Beside him Seán Cronin is back at hooker after hamstring and neck injuries hampered the second half of last season with Michael Bent completing the front row at tight head prop.

Devin Toner makes his 199th appearance for Leinster in the second row alongside Fardy.

Dan Leavy starts at blindside flanker with Josh van der Flier selected for the openside.

Finally Max Deegan completes the pack and lines out in the number eight jersey for his first senior start for Leinster on the occasion of his fourth cap.

Meanwhile, Connacht boss Kieran Keane has named his starting 15 to face Glasgow Warriors at the Showgrounds (7.35pm) with Jarrad Butler making his debut while Bundee Aki returns to the side in a midfield partnership with Eoin Griffin.

Connacht are further strengthened by the inclusion of four Irish internationals, as Denis Buckley, Finlay Bealham and Ultan Dillane start in the front five while Kieran Marmion starts at scrum half where he renews his half back pairing with Jack Carty.

John Muldoon captains the side at number 8 in his 15th season with his native province. Eoghan Masterson joins him in the back row for the Championship opener along with debutant Butler.

DRAGONS V LEINSTER

LEINSTER

15. Rob Kearney (185)

14. Adam Byrne (24)

13. Rory O’Loughlin (21)

12. Isa Nacewa (170) CAPTAIN

11. Jordan Larmour (0)

10. Ross Byrne (23)

9. Jamison Gibson-Park (29)

1. Cian Healy (172)

2. Seán Cronin (128)

3. Michael Bent (87)

4. Devin Toner (198)

5. Scott Fardy (0)

6. Dan Leavy (39)

7. Josh van der Flier (46)

8. Max Deegan (3)

Replacements

16. James Tracy (42)

17. Ed Byrne (7)

18. Andrew Porter (8)

19. James Ryan (0)

20. Jack Conan (51)

21. Nick McCarthy (7)

22. Cathal Marsh (18)

23. Barry Daly (10)

Referee: Mike Adamson (SRU)

 

CONNACHT V GLASGOW

CONNACHT

(15-9) Darragh Leader, Cian Kelleher, Eoin Griffin, Bundee Aki, Matt Healy, Jack Carty, Kieran Marmion, (1-8) Denis Buckley, Tom McCartney, Finlay Bealham, Ultan Dillane, James Cannon, Eoghan Masterson, Jarrad Butler, John Muldoon

Replacements (16-23): Shane Delahunt, Peter McCabe, Conor Carey, Sean O’Brien, Eoin McKeon, Conor McKeon, Craig Ronaldson, Tom Farrell.

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