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Munster Name Squad For Toulon Test

Munster Name Squad For Toulon Test

Munster head coach Tony McGahan has announced a 27-man squad for the province’s crunch Heineken Cup clash with Toulon at Stade Felix Mayol on Sunday (kick-off 4pm local time/3pm Irish time).

Regular captain Paul O’Connell makes a return to the Munster squad, having completed a four-week suspension for an incident in the province’s Heineken Cup win over the Ospreys in Limerick last month.

The squad continued their preparations for this weekend’s round 5 trip to Toulon with a morning training session at the Cork Institute of Technology facilities.

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The senior players were joined by the Munster ‘A’ squad who return to action this weekend in the British & Irish Cup.

Tony McGahan will reveal the team and replacements for the Toulon game on Friday afternoon.

In addition to O’Connell’s return, the Munster management have Tony Buckley and Sam Tuitupou back fit and available after time out with illness, while Doug Howlett, John Hayes and David Wallace have also recovered from recent knocks.

Toulon’s English lock Dean Schofield knows just how vital O’Connell is to the Munster cause – even if he has to play a cameo role due to his lack of game-time.

“He’s a cracking player and if Paul O’Connell is going forward the Munster team play well,” admitted Schofield, in the aftermath of Toulon’s 15-12 defeat at Racing Metro last Sunday.

“I’ve got massive respect for Donncha O’Callaghan as well. I’ve watched him right throughout his career and he’s a cracking player as well, but I’m sure Paul O’Connell will be champing at the bit to get a start and he’ll get it I should imagine.

“We respect Munster, we know what track record they’ve got, we know they’ve got real quality and they really know how to play in the Heineken Cup.

“If anyone knows how to pull out results it’s those guys. So we know it’s going to be a good game. We got played off the park in all honesty (at Thomond Park), so it’s going to be a tight game this weekend.

“From the league to the Heineken Cup they always seem to switch on and bring something else to the party and I’m sure that’s going to be the case on Sunday.

“We’ll watch the videos but we know there’ll be an underlying intensity there that they’re going to bring to us.”

MUNSTER Squad (v Toulon) – Backs (11): Tomas O’Leary, Peter Stringer, Scott Deasy, Ronan O’Gara, Paul Warwick, Johne Murphy, Sam Tuitupou, Keith Earls, Lifeimi Mafi, Denis Hurley, Doug Howlett.

Forwards (16): Wian du Preez, Darragh Hurley, Tony Buckley, John Hayes, Mike Sherry, Damien Varley, Billy Holland, Donncha O’Callaghan, Paul O’Connell, Mick O’Driscoll, Donnacha Ryan, Niall Ronan, James Coughlan, Tommy O’Donnell, David Wallace, Denis Leamy.