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Leinster Name Team To Face Dragons

Leinster Name Team To Face Dragons

The Leinster team to face the Newport Gwent Dragons in Friday night’s RaboDirect PRO12 match at the RDS (kick-off 7.35pm) has been named.

Isa Nacewa, Leinster’s Player of the Year in 2010/11, continues in the back-three alongside Fionn Carr and David Kearney for the visit of the Welsh region.

Cillian Willis will partner Ian Madigan at half-back with Ireland Under-20 international Brendan Macken starting at centre alongside Eoin O’Malley in the absence of Luke Fitzgerald.

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The pack is unchanged with the Ireland-capped Rhys Ruddock again leading the side and he continues his back-row partnership with Kevin McLaughlin and Dominic Ryan.

Devin Toner locks down with Damian Browne in the second row, with Heinke van der Merwe continuing in the front row alongside Richardt Strauss and Jamie Hagan.

A decision on the final place on the replacements bench will be made closer to kick-off, with Jack O’Connell and new arrival Nathan White in contention.

Over 14,500 tickets have now been sold for Friday’s game and tickets are still on sale online here, from Spar (Donnybrook), the Leinster Rugby Store (Donnybrook) as well as Ticketmaster outlets nationwide. They will also be available to purchase on the gate on Friday.

Meanwhile, Leinster Rugby are hosting a Club Open Day throughout the province this Sunday.

In conjunction with Ireland’s first match of the Rugby World Cup and on foot of Leinster’s success in the Heineken Cup, a number of clubs have already come together to hold a co-ordinated ‘Open Day’.

The purpose of the day is to introduce the club and social side of the sport to people who may not have played rugby before and encourage club participation.

The day itself will be focused on a welcome for visitors both new and old with the format down to individual clubs.

The events will vary from club to club but will range from Tag rugby to minis, youths, junior and veteran players and volunteers’ participation. Visit www.leinsterrugby.ie for further information.

LEINSTER (v Newport Gwent Dragons): Isa Nacewa; Fionn Carr, Brendan Macken, Eoin O’Malley, David Kearney; Ian Madigan, Cillian Willis; Heinke van der Merwe, Richardt Strauss, Jamie Hagan, Damian Browne, Devin Toner, Kevin McLaughlin, Dominic Ryan, Rhys Ruddock (capt).

Replacements: Aaron Dundon, Jack McGrath, Jack O’Connell/Nathan White, Mark Flanagan, Leo Auva’a, John Cooney, Mat Berquist, Darren Hudson.