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Lam And Parata Pair Up In Connacht Eagles’ Midfield

Lam And Parata Pair Up In Connacht Eagles’ Midfield

Head coach Mossy Lawler has named his Connacht Eagles team ahead of round 2 in the British & Irish Cup and the trip to play London Irish at Madejski Stadium on Saturday (kick-off 3pm).

There are six personnel changes to the side that lost 23-10 to Cornish Pirates in the opening round five days ago. With alterations to the senior team to play Zebre, the reshuffled Eagles back-line sees Dave Panter drafted in from Corinthians to start at full-back.

Luke Carty, younger brother of senior out-half Jack, swaps the number 15 shirt for 10 this week, while Mitch Lam, who kicked eight points last Sunday, lines out at inside centre.

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Winger Adam Leavy and scrum half Conor McKeon from the Connacht Academy are also brought in to the youthful back-line.

Cronan Gleeson and Pat O’Toole are both promoted from the bench to start in the front row, while experienced lock Lewis Stevenson is named in the second row where he partners this week’s team captain Daniel Qualter.

Commenting on the clash with the Exiles, Mossy Lawler said: “It’s another big challenge this week as we head over to London Irish with a very young and relatively inexperienced group, but the team are determined to put in a performance we can be proud of.

“There were some positive aspects to our game last week, despite the loss, but we know we will need to build on these and improve across the board to give us a chance on Saturday.”

CONNACHT EAGLES (v London Irish): Dave Panter (Corinthians); Adam Leavy (Galwegians), Rory Parata (Galwegians), Mitch Lam (Galwegians), Ed O’Keeffe (Galwegians); Luke Carty (Buccaneers), Conor McKeon (Buccaneers); Cronan Gleeson (Nenagh Ormond), Pat O’Toole (Corinthians), Jason East (Galwegians), Lewis Stevenson, Daniel Qualter (Buccaneers) (capt), Marc Kelly (Galwegians), James Connolly (Corinthians), Stephen McVeigh (Buccaneers).

Replacements: Shane O’Hehir (Sligo), Ja Naughton (Galwegians), Sean Masterson (Corinthians), Josh Pim (Galwegians), Stephen Kerins (Corinthians), Jordan Conroy (Buccaneers), Joe Murphy (Corinthians).