23 May, 12:21
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Leinster coach Michael Cheika has made three changes to his side as they bid for their third successive win in the Magners League.
MAGNERS LEAGUE: Friday, October 13
BORDER REIVERS v LEINSTER, Netherdale, 7.30pm (live Setanta Sports)
Team News: Leinster coach Michael Cheika has made three changes to the side that beat Munster for this week's league trip to the Borders.
Reggie Corrigan, Rob Kearney and Luke Fitzgerald will all return to the starting XV. Corrigan partners Brian Blaney and Will Green in the front row in the only change to the pack.
Guy Easterby continues his half-back partnership with Felipe Contepomi, with Australian Chris Whitaker still nursing a shoulder injury, while Bernard Jackman, Cillian Willis and Kieran Lewis are named on the bench.
Meanwhile, the Reivers will have first choice centre Ben MacDougall back in their side after his recovery from a bruised hip. He has been out of action for the guts of a month after sustaining the injury against the Ospreys.
MacDougall will start alongside Garry Law in the Scots' midfield, while Nick De Luca moves to the left wing with National Academy (Borders) winger Mark Robertson dropping out of the squad to play for his club Melrose.
New signing Ed Kalman will also make his first start, at tighthead prop, since joining the Reivers during the summer.
Borders: Calum MacRae; Simon Danielli, Ben MacDougall, Garry Law, Nick De Luca; Steve Jones, Chris Cusiter (capt); Gavin Kerr, Ross Ford, Ed Kalman, Opeta Palepoi, Craig Hamilton, Ross Beattie, Scott Gray, Kelly Brown.
Replacements: Steve Scott, Bruce Douglas, Scott Newlands, John Dalziel, Brendan McKerchar, Andy Miller, Gregor Townsend.
Leinster: Rob Kearney; Luke Fitzgerald, Brian O'Driscoll (capt), Gordon D'Arcy, Denis Hickie; Felipe Contepomi, Guy Easterby; Reggie Corrigan, Brian Blaney, Will Green, Trevor Hogan, Malcolm O'Kelly, Cameron Jowitt, Keith Gleeson, Jamie Heaslip.
Replacements: Harry Vermaas, Bernard Jackman, Owen Finegan, Stephen Keogh, Cillian Willis, Christian Warner, Kieran Lewis.
Referee: Neil Ballard (Wales)
Touch Judges: David Changleng, Alistair Cummings (both Scotland)
PREVIOUS LEAGUE MEETINGS:
September 2002 - Borders 23 Leinster 18, Netherdale
October 2003 - Borders 21 Leinster 26, Netherdale
March 2004 - Leinster 35 Borders 12, Donnybrook
September 2004 - Leinster 50 Borders 13, Donnybrook
January 2005 - Borders 29 Leinster 16, Netherdale
January 2006 - Leinster 62 Borders 14, Donnybrook
April 2006 - Borders 34 Leinster 35, Netherdale
- Borders Reivers are struggling with their form of late and have posted just one victory in their last dozen matches - a 43-5 success against the Dragons at Netherdale last May. In addition, the Reivers have lost their last eight games against Irish oppositon
- Leinster lowered the colours of their southern foes Munster at Lansdowne Road last week and are now going for their third successive Magners League win. Michael Cheika's men did lose on their last visit to Scotland on September 8 - they went down to Edinburgh at Murrayfield
- Leinster won both matches they played against the Reivers last season, although the second one, at Netherdale last April, was by the narrowest of margins in a 69-point thriller
- Leinster out-half Felipe Contepomi, who holds the league record for most points in a season (287), has had a slow start, scoring wise, to the current campaign. The Argentinian is ranked seventh in the 2006/07 list of top scorers with 41 points (7 conversions and 9 penalties). Borders full-back Calum MacRae is his side's top scorer with 21 points (7 penalties)
- Contepomi has a kicking success rate of 64% (16 successes from 25 kicks), while MacRae is twelfth in the kicking stats with 63.64% (7 out of 11). Contepomi grabbed himself a personal haul of 20 points (2 tries, 2 conversions and 2 penalties) when these sides last met in April
- Nikki Walker, who joined the Ospreys last May, would have posed a big attacking threat for the Borders on Friday - he scored three tries against Leinster last season.
Flying winger Gary Brown also tallied up three tries for Leinster - but in one match. The Blackrock clubman ran in a hat-trick against the Scots at Donnybrook last January, repeating the feat he managed against the same opposition at the same venue in September 2004