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Kelleher Set For Connacht Debut Against Glasgow

Kelleher Set For Connacht Debut Against Glasgow

Connacht head coach Pat Lam has named his first team of the new GUINNESS PRO12 season as his side prepares to host Glasgow Warriors at the Sportsground on Saturday afternoon (kick-off 5.15pm).

New signing Cian Kelleher will make his competitive debut, lining out at full-back against the Scottish side. The 22-year-old is named in a back-three with Niyi Adeolokun and Ireland international Matt Healy.
Eoin Griffin has been handed the number 13 shirt for his return to the Sportsground after two seasons with London Irish. The 25-year-old from Galway will partner the 2015/16 PRO12 Players’ Player of the Season, Bundee Aki, in midfield.
In the pack, Denis Buckley makes a welcome return to the front row after his lengthy lay off recovering from an ankle injury. Internationals Finlay Bealham and Ultan Dillane are also named and Nepia Fox-Matamua returns to start in the back row with Eoin McKeon and captain John Muldoon.
From the bench, lock Lewis Stevenson is in line to make his full Connacht debut and Kieran Marmion comes in as the replacement scrum half.
Commenting on the team selection and the league opener against Glasgow, Pat Lam said: “What an exciting game to kick off a new season at home where we have two teams who really like to express themselves. Games against Glasgow are always tough and uncompromising and with their impressive selection of international players, we expect that to be no different tomorrow.
“It’s a new season and a somewhat new-look side with just eight who started at Murrayfield in May lining out tomorrow. Today is the last time all 12 teams will be level on points. With five points on offer now our focus is on the process which will give us the best chance of winning.  
“Starting the league at home is a huge boost and we’re looking forward to experiencing the magical atmosphere here at the Sportsground once again come 5.15pm.”
CONNACHT (v Glasgow Warriors): Cian Kelleher; Niyi Adeolokun, Eoin Griffin, Bundee Aki, Matt Healy; Jack Carty, Caolin Blade; Denis Buckley, Tom McCartney, Finlay Bealham, Ultan Dillane, Daniel Qualter, Eoin McKeon, Nepia Fox-Matamua, John Muldoon (capt).

Replacements: Dave Heffernan, Ronan Loughney, JP Cooney, Lewis Stevenson, James Connolly, Kieran Marmion, Shane O’Leary, Peter Robb.

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