Connacht have announced a 26-man squad ahead of their European Challenge Cup quarter-final clash with Northampton at Franklin’s Gardens on Saturday afternoon (kick-off 3pm).
Robbie Morris, Mel Deane, David Gannon and Aidan Wynne have all been called up to the squad as these two sides face each other for the first time since October 1997 in this competition.
Former England prop Morris actually made 17 Heineken Cup appearances for Northampton during his spell with the club.
The Connacht players are brimming with confidence after last Friday’s five-try 39-17 Magners League victory over the Dragons at the Sportsground.
Speaking ahead of the province’s first European quarter-final since 2006, coach Michael Bradley told IrishRugby.ie: “We’ve looked at Northampton, we’ve a lot of information on them. We’re quite familiar with (Roger) Wilson and (Neil) Best and (James) Downey – Downey having played for ourselves and Wilson and Best with Ulster.
“So we’re quite familiar with key players in key positions and we’re going into the match to win it. It’s a one-off.
“They’re quite formidable at Franklin’s Gardens. I think they’ve lost one match there in two years now, the first year being in the First Division.
“But we’re going there full of confidence. When we play well, we’re a match for anybody and that’s the intention we’ll go over with.”
CONNACHT Squad (v Northampton Saints): Backs (12) – Liam Bibo, Fionn Carr, Mel Deane, Gavin Duffy, Andy Dunne, Ian Keatley, Keith Matthews, Frank Murphy, Troy Nathan, Conor O’Loughlin, Niva Ta’auso, Aidan Wynne.
Forwards (14) – Andrew Browne, Sean Cronin, Andrew Farley, Adrian Flavin, David Gannon, Ronan Loughney, Brian McGovern, Robbie Morris, John Muldoon (capt), Johnny O’Connor, Ray Ofisa, Colm Rigney, Michael Swift, Brett Wilkinson.