Friday 24 November 2017

Ryan set for surprise recall by Munster

Ruaidhri O'Connor

Ruaidhri O'Connor

DONNACHA RYAN could be in line for a shock return to the Munster team for tomorrow's trip to Perpignan, writes Ruaidhri O'Connor.

The second-row, along with flanker Tommy O'Donnell, looks set for a comeback to the squad for the first time since October after coming through training, and the in-demand Ireland star may even be fit enough to start.

Rob Penney's decision to let CJ Stander and Billy Holland drop down from the first team squad to the British & Irish Cup outfit frees up space for the duo.

Ian Keatley also trained yesterday and Penney will be hopeful that his fly-half suffered no ill-effects from the dead leg he picked up in last week's win.

Cathal Sheridan looks set to get the nod at scrum-half, having impressed after Conor Murray went off last Sunday, while props James Cronin and BJ Botha may come into the starting line-up. Penney will name his team this afternoon.

Meanwhile, Munster's forwards coach Anthony Foley will take charge of the Ireland Wolfhounds team against England Saxons in a pre-Six Nations clash on January 25. He will be assisted by Ulster's Neil Doak, who teamed up with Foley during last summer's tour of North America. Malone's Jon Miles will manage the team for the Kingsholm match.

Foley's long-term Munster team-mate Peter Stringer is set to join an elite club of players when he makes his 100th European appearance tonight. The Bath scrum-half joins two former team-mates -- Ronan O'Gara and John Hayes --as just the third player to make it to a century of caps.

"It makes me feel like I've been playing the game for a while! Obviously, it's a nice number to get to, but it's just a number -- that's really all it is," Stringer said.

"It's really about the memories you have, the players you play with and the experiences you have on the pitch. There's no point having those numbers if you're not successful and not winning things."

Irish Independent

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