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Leinster Include Lions Trio

Leinster Include Lions Trio

The Leinster squad to face Edinburgh in Saturday’s Magners League meeting at Murrayfield (kick-off 6.30pm) has been named.

2009 Lions Luke Fitzgerald, Jamie Heaslip and Rob Kearney have been named in the Leinster panel for the first time this season and they are joined by Girvan Dempsey, who missed last weekend’s 18-11 victory over the Ospreys.

Jonathan Sexton, who scored 15 points in the Liberty Stadium tie, is also included alongside the likes of Leo Cullen, Nathan Hines, Shane Jennings and 19-year-old Leinster Academy and Ireland Under-20 back rower Dominic Ryan. 

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Speaking ahead of Saturday’s game at Murrayfield, Leinster consultant coach Alan Gaffney said that the squad are excited about the prospect of facing an in-form Edinburgh.

“Edinburgh have always been a good side and perhaps they’re only getting the recognition they deserve now after their excellent start to the season,” he said.

“They’re a side we know well having played them four times last season and with each game you can see how they’re progressing, so that makes this weekend’s game an exciting one to be a part of and one I know our players are looking forward to.

“We have won two out of our first three games this year and we are improving.

“We beat a Dragons side at home who are going well near the top of the league and followed that up with the win in Swansea last weekend, so we’re pretty happy with where we are, but we also know that there’s room for improvement.”

Gaffney added: “The remaining Lions players have been working very hard in training over the last few weeks and I know how desperately keen they all are to get back on the paddock and play.

“It has been a long pre-season for them, which was deserved after a long season, but they’re fit and raring to go and we’re happy to welcome them back to the panel.

“They will just add to the competition levels in the squad, which is good news for us.”

Meanwhile, Leinster’s Magners League provincial derby with Munster on Saturday week has now sold out.

LEINSTER Squad (v Edinburgh): Backs (12) – Shaun Berne, Gordon D’Arcy, Girvan Dempsey, Luke Fitzgerald, Shane Horgan, Chris Keane, Rob Kearney, Simon Keogh, Fergus McFadden, Isa Nacewa, Eoin Reddan, Jonathan Sexton.

Forwards (14) – Leo Cullen, John Fogarty, Cian Healy, Jamie Heaslip, Nathan Hines, Bernard Jackman, Shane Jennings, Ronan McCormack, Kevin McLaughlin, Sean O’Brien, Mike Ross, Dominic Ryan, Devin Toner, Stan Wright.