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Leinster Welcome Back McGrath, Sexton And Te’o

Leinster Welcome Back McGrath, Sexton And Te’o

After training in UCD this morning, Leinster head coach Leo Cullen has announced his team to take on Connacht in the GUINNESS PRO12 at the RDS on New Year’s Day (kick-off 5pm).

There are eleven changes from the Munster game with a number of players returning after recent injuries. Notably, Luke McGrath (knee), Jonathan Sexton (quad) and Ben Te’o (concussion) are all back in the starting line-up.

Sean O’Brien, who is included on the bench, is also in line to make his 100th Leinster appearance should he be used as a replacement.

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In the pack Jack McGrath is once again selected at loosehead prop after his try-scoring performance last weekend, with Martin Moore coming in to start on the tighthead side. Richardt Strauss also starts at hooker.

Devin Toner is joined in the second row by former Connacht player Mike McCarthy who played 160 times in two spells out west. Captain Rhys Ruddock leads the charge from blindside flanker in a completely new back row that includes Josh van der Flier at openside and Jordi Murphy at number 8.

Rob Kearney starts at full-back in only his second PRO12 game of the season on his 170th appearance for Leinster. Fergus McFadden continues on the right wing with Dave Kearney coming in on the left having been an unused replacement in Limerick.

Te’o takes over at inside centre from Luke Fitzgerald, with Garry Ringrose outside him at number 13. Luke McGrath and Sexton both return from injury to form the half-back combination.

Leinster Rugby would like to advise those attending the interpro derby that with other events such as Funderland on at the RDS during the busy festive period, parking will be extremely limited and supporters are asked to consider public transport and car pooling as a means of attending the fixture.

Over 16,500 tickets have been sold for the Leinster v Connacht clash. Purchase your tickets here.

LEINSTER (v Connacht): Rob Kearney; Fergus McFadden, Garry Ringrose, Ben Te’o, Dave Kearney; Jonathan Sexton, Luke McGrath; Jack McGrath, Richardt Strauss, Martin Moore, Devin Toner, Mike McCarthy, Rhys Ruddock (capt), Josh van der Flier, Jordi Murphy.

Replacements: James Tracy, Peter Dooley, Michael Bent, Ross Molony, Sean O’Brien, Eoin Reddan, Ian Madigan, Zane Kirchner.