Rob Kearney back in Leinster XV
May 27, 2016 12:00 am client
Leinster Rugby Head Coach Leo Cullen has named his match day 23 ahead of tomorrow’s Guinness PRO12 Final against Connacht Rugby in BT Murrayfield (Kick Off: 5.30pm – live on SKY Sports and TG4).
There are two changes from the starting XV that accounted for Ulster in the Play-Offs last Friday with Isa Nacewa and Devin Toner missing out and a further change on the bench.
Captain Isa Nacewa has been ruled out with an arm injury suffered in the game against Ulster. While that injury came back clear from the initial x-ray, a subsequent scan on Monday showed damage had been done to an older injury and in particular to one of the screws that he has in the plate in his arm which affected his ability to grip. As a result Jamie Heaslip, the club vice-captain, will lead the team.
With Nacewa absent from the number 15 jersey, Rob Kearney returns from the ankle injury suffered in the Round 22 game against Benetton Treviso. His brother Dave continues on the right wing, with Luke Fitzgerald on the left.
Ben Te’o will play his last game for Leinster in the centre with Academy centre Garry Ringrose outside him once again. Eoin Reddan will win his 140th cap in Leinster colours at scrumhalf with Johnny Sexton at 10.
In the pack Jack McGrath, Richardt Strauss and Mike Ross, who were all announced in Joe Schmidt’s Ireland squad to tour South Africa during the week, have been named in the front row once again. Ross Molony and Mick Kearney will pack down behind them in the second row.
In the back row, Rhys Ruddock, Jordi Murphy and captain Jamie Heaslip complete the pack.
With Molony starting, Hayden Triggs comes on to the bench in line to win his 15th cap with Luke McGrath also in line to win his 50th cap should he be introduced at any stage.
LEINSTER (Leinster caps in bracket):
15. Rob Kearney (175)
14. Dave Kearney (102)
13. Garry Ringrose (21)
12. Ben Te’o (39)
11. Luke Fitzgerald (153)
10. Johnny Sexton (125)
9. Eoin Reddan (139)
1. Jack McGrath (94)
2. Richardt Strauss (130)
3. Mike Ross (134)
4. Ross Molony (22)
5. Mick Kearney (8)
6. Rhys Ruddock (112)
7. Jordi Murphy (79)
8. Jamie Heaslip (216) CAPTAIN
16. Sean Cronin (113)
17. Peter Dooley (20)
18. Tadhg Furlong (50)
19. Hayden Triggs (14)
20. Jack Conan (30)
21. Luke McGrath (49)
22. Ian Madigan (146)
23. Zane Kirchner (64)
Referee: Nigel Owens (WRU, 136th competition game, 4th Final)
Assistant Referees: Ian Davies, Ben Whitehouse (WRU)
Officials: 4 Lloyd Linton; 5 Bob Nevins; 6 Tom Mc Nicol (all SRU)
Timekeeper; Paul Cyphus (SRU)
Citing Commissioner: Maurizio Vancini (FIR)
TMO: Jon Mason (WRU)