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Connacht Make Four Changes Up Front

Connacht Make Four Changes Up Front

Connacht head coach Eric Elwood has announced his team to play Benetton Treviso in the latest round of the RaboDirect PRO12 at the Stadio di Monigo on Saturday (kick-off 8pm local time/7pm Irish time).

There are four personnel changes and two positional switches to the Connacht team that lost 22-0 to Munster last weekend, with all of the alterations coming in the pack.

Jason Harris-Wright suffered a calf muscle strain during the interprovincial clash at Musgrave Park and is out of action this week as a result. Adrian Flavin will start in his place at hooker, earning his 140th cap for Connacht.

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Ronan Loughney comes into the front row in place of Nathan White who drops down to the replacements bench.

The second row is made up of Michael Kearney and Ireland international Mike McCarthy, who returns to the starting line-up this week after appearing as a replacement in Cork.

There is a reshuffle in the back row with John Muldoon returning to his more familiar blindside flanker position. Willie Faloon, who picked up a slight ankle injury this week in training, is replaced by Eoin McKeon at openside and George Naoupu starts at number 8.

David Heffernan is named among the forward replacements. The 22-year-old Ballina man, who recently signed a development contract that will see him progress to the senior squad next season, earned his first senior cap against the Scarlets this time last year.

CONNACHT (v Benetton Treviso): Robbie Henshaw; Danie Poolman, Eoin Griffin, Brian Murphy, Gavin Duffy (capt); Dan Parks, Kieran Marmion; Brett Wilkinson, Adrian Flavin, Ronan Loughney, Michael Kearney, Mike McCarthy, John Muldoon, Eoin McKeon, George Naoupu.

Replacements: Ethienne Reynecke, Denis Buckley, Nathan White, Andrew Browne, David Heffernan, Paul O’Donohoe, Miah Nikora, Fetu’u Vainikolo.