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Jackman Back For Leinster

Jackman Back For Leinster

The Leinster team to face the Ospreys in Friday night’s Magners League clash at the Liberty Stadium (kick-off 7.05pm) has been named.

Bernard Jackman returns to the starting line-up in the only change from the side that defeated the Scarlets 31-17 last time out. He lines up in a strong pack for the trip to Swansea.

Gordon D’Arcy continues his centre partnership with Fergus McFadden, with Shane Horgan forming an exciting back-three alongside Isa Nacewa and Girvan Dempsey.

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In the pack skipper Shane Jennings and Cameron Jowitt – both try scorers in Llanelli – again start in the back row alongside Rocky Elsom.

Chris Whitaker and Sean O’Brien have both recovered from injury to take their places amongst the replacements.

Speaking ahead of the game, Leinster and Ireland flanker Jennings said: “The victory in Llanelli was a very important result and it showed that with Munster also winning, you have to keep the pressure on the teams around you.

“It was great to see a number of the younger players step up to the mark and what they may have lacked in experience, they more than made up for in enthusiasm.

“It is vital that the squad remains competitive and that we’re constantly challenging each other in training. With that in mind, training has been extremely sharp since the Llanelli win.

“There were some good individual displays that night, but we know that we have to improve our discipline.

“I enjoyed captaining the team against Llanelli, but with so many leaders in the dressing room, the role isn’t as prominent nowadays. If I feel that there’s something that needs to be said, I’ll say it, but there are a number of leaders who will speak up.

“The important thing is that there is collective responsibility and that we’re heading together in the same direction as a team.

“Friday night’s game is another game that we have to win. There’s the danger that if we slip up that Munster will have an opportunity to put daylight between the other teams.

“So we will have to be focused and treat the Ospreys with the respect they deserve.”

Leinster prop Cian Healy added: “Friday night is another huge game for us. The Llanelli result was a massive one in the context of the Magners League, but we moved on and have worked really hard over the last fortnight with this game in mind.

“Whenever you play away from home, it’s important that you stand up and, certainly, the Ospreys are a team that we have great respect for.

“They’re very attack-minded and the game is sure to be very physical, and they will no doubt expect the same from us. All we can do is focus on ourselves and on our own performance.

“I’ve played at the Liberty Stadium before and it’s a fantastic arena. They will obviously look to make home advantage count, but I think that all of our players have our heads screwed on for what will be a tough, physical game.”

LEINSTER (v Ospreys): Girvan Dempsey; Shane Horgan, Fergus McFadden, Gordon D’Arcy, Isa Nacewa; Felipe Contepomi, Paul O’Donohoe; Cian Healy, Bernard Jackman, Stan Wright, Trevor Hogan, Malcolm O’Kelly, Cameron Jowitt, Shane Jennings (capt), Rocky Elsom.

Replacements: Brian Blaney, Stephen Knoop, Devin Toner, Sean O’Brien, Chris Whitaker, Jonathan Sexton, Simon Keogh.