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Tuqiri Replaces Injured O’Driscoll For Leinster

Tuqiri Replaces Injured O’Driscoll For Leinster

The Leinster team to face Munster in Saturday evening’s RaboDirect PRO12 derby clash at Thomond Park (kick-off 6.45pm) has been named.

Jamie Heaslip will captain Leinster for the 15th time for the trip to Limerick which will mark his 168th appearance for the province.

The Naas man is named in a back row which includes fellow Ireland international Kevin McLaughlin and the returning Sean O’Brien.

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Mike McCarthy locks down alongside Devin Toner in an all-Ireland qualified pack, with Cian Healy named in the front row alongside hooker Sean Cronin and Mike Ross.

Ian Madigan starts at out-half and will make his 85th appearance, linking up with Eoin Reddan at half-back.

The squad are boosted by the return of several players including Australian Lote Tuqiri who starts at outside centre alongside Gordon D’Arcy in a new-look midfield.

Brian O’Driscoll picked up a minor calf strain in training this week and will be assessed by the medical team over the coming days regarding his availability for next weekend’s opening Heineken Cup clash away to the Ospreys.

Meanwhile, last season’s Young Player of the Year Jordi Murphy has undergone a procedure on an ankle injury and will be out for a number of weeks.

The back-three is unchanged with Rob Kearney continuing at full-back alongside his brother David and Fergus McFadden.

Luke Fitzgerald is named on the replacements bench having been sidelined since the opening round victory over the Scarlets.

Fitzgerald is included alongside fellow backs Isaac Boss and Jimmy Gopperth, with young flanker Dominic Ryan standing back to win his 50th Leinster cap.

LEINSTER (v Munster): Rob Kearney; Fergus McFadden, Lote Tuqiri, Gordon D’Arcy, David Kearney; Ian Madigan, Eoin Reddan; Cian Healy, Sean Cronin, Mike Ross, Mike McCarthy, Devin Toner, Kevin McLaughlin, Sean O’Brien, Jamie Heaslip (capt).

Replacements: Aaron Dundon, Jack McGrath, Martin Moore, Rhys Ruddock, Dominic Ryan, Isaac Boss, Jimmy Gopperth, Luke Fitzgerald.