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Carbery Slots Back In At Out-Half For Leinster

Carbery Slots Back In At Out-Half For Leinster

Leinster head coach Leo Cullen has made eight changes to the team that will take on Edinburgh in the GUINNESS PRO12 at the RDS on Friday night (kick-off 7.35pm).

With the second-placed Ospreys hosting table toppers Munster on Saturday, Friday’s game is a massive opportunity for third-placed Leinster as they look to keep the pressure on the PRO12 pacesetters.

With a number of Ireland players available to Leo Cullen they have been drafted in from the start, while others only back from injury last weekend against Benetton Treviso are also given the chance to impress. In total, there are 11 internationals in the Leinster starting line-up.

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On the occasion of his 80th provincial cap, Zane Kirchner continues at full-back with Dave Kearney again selected on the wing having scored tries 20 and 21 of his Leinster career in his comeback game last week against Treviso. However, with UCD’s Barry Daly coming in on the left wing, it means a shift across to the right wing for Kearney.

Noel Reid and Rory O’Loughlin will continue in the centre but it is a new combination at half-back. Ireland internationals Luke McGrath and Joey Carbery will don the number 9 and 10 jerseys respectively in what will be Carbery’s first start since injuring his ankle away to Northampton Saints in December.

Prop Peter Dooley retains his starting jersey from last week with James Tracy coming in at hooker having come off the bench for Ireland against Italy last Saturday. Mike Ross starts at tighthead having played nearly 30 minutes off the bench against Treviso in his return from a hamstring injury.

There is a new-look second row with Ross Molony and Mike McCarthy partnering each other, while Dominic Ryan and Jack Conan have been retained at blindside flanker and number 8 respectively, with Josh van der Flier coming in at openside.

Tickets for the Leinster v Edinburgh clash are still on sale from Ticketmaster. Tickets will also be available from the ticket office at the Anglesea Road entrance from 6pm on Friday.

LEINSTER (v Edinburgh): Zane Kirchner; Dave Kearney, Rory O’Loughlin, Noel Reid, Barry Daly; Joey Carbery, Luke McGrath; Peter Dooley, James Tracy, Mike Ross, Ross Molony, Mike McCarthy, Dominic Ryan, Josh van der Flier, Jack Conan.

Replacements: Bryan Byrne, Andrew Porter, Michael Bent, Mick Kearney, Dan Leavy, Jamison Gibson Park, Ross Byrne, Adam Byrne.