12 Dec, 14:42
Prop Cian Healy is expected to miss the start of the 2014 RBS 6 Nations after undergoing surgery on his injured ankle on Wednesday.
Connacht coach Michael Bradley has delayed naming his side for Saturday's Celtic League tie with Cardiff, but confirmed an inital 22-man squad earlier today.
New signings Colm Rigney and Keith Matthews are certain to play a part in the westerners' first competitive match of the season according to Bradley, who is being assisted in his coaching duties this season by the province's legendary fly-half Eric Elwood.
Rigney is returning to Connacht having spent two seasons with Premiership club Leeds Tykes while former Ireland under-21 centre Matthews, who is now 23, will be making his debut for the province.
Saturday's clash kick-offs at 2.10pm at the Sportsground in Galway.
CONNACHT Squad: Forwards: Ray Hogan, Stephen Knoop, Dan McFarland, Ronan Loughney, John Fogarty, Chris Venter, Andrew Farley (Capt), Christian Short, Michael Swift, Colm Rigney, Brendan O'Connor, John Muldoon, Matt Lacey.
Backs: Chris Keane, Conor O'Loughlin, David Slemen, Paul Warwick, Darren Yapp, Keith Matthews, Conor McPhillips, Matt Mostyn.