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Carbery And Mathewson Continue At Half-Back For Munster

Carbery And Mathewson Continue At Half-Back For Munster

The Munster team to face Leinster at the Aviva Stadium in Saturday’s eagerly-awaited interprovincial derby (kick-off 6pm) has been confirmed by head coach Johann van Graan.

There are three changes to the side that secured Munster’s record GUINNESS PRO14 win over Ulster (64-7) at Thomond Park last Saturday. Jean Kleyn starts in the second row and Darren Sweetnam and Sam Arnold are added to the back-line.

Peter O’Mahony captains the Munstermen in an unchanged back row with in-form openside Tommy O’Donnell, who ran in two tries last weekend, and CJ Stander keeping their places. Dave Kilcoyne, Niall Scannell and Stephen Archer are also retained in the front row, with Kleyn partnering Tadhg Beirne in the engine room.

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Andrew Conway, who becomes the latest Munster player to reach 100 caps, starts at full-back with Sweetnam and Keith Earls on either flank. Dan Goggin, a standout performer in the Ulster game with a brace of tries, is joined by Arnold in midfield.

Joey Carbery, who made his high-profile move from Leinster in the summer, will face his former team as he makes his fourth successive start in the number 10 jersey. His 18 points against Ulster took his Munster haul to 38 points so far, and All Black Alby Mathewson, a debutant six days ago, will partner Carbery again at half-back.

Speaking ahead of the Dublin date with the defending PRO14 champions, Johann van Graan said: “You have to think outside the box against them (Leinster). Let’s call their defence the secret of their team. They don’t really commit a lot of guys to the breakdown. They are very comfortable to defend 10, 20, or 30 phases and once they get that turnover, they punish you.

“A lot of teams have come trying different things against them – some guys try to keep the ball in hand; some go to the air, some went with a breakdown focus and some went in with a variety of stuff. The important thing for us is that we play our game.”

Tickets for Leinster v Munster remain on general sale. Click here to buy now from Ticketmaster.ie.

MUNSTER (v Leinster): Andrew Conway; Darren Sweetnam, Sam Arnold, Dan Goggin, Keith Earls; Joey Carbery, Alby Mathewson; Dave Kilcoyne, Niall Scannell, Stephen Archer, Jean Kleyn, Tadhg Beirne, Peter O’Mahony (capt), Tommy O’Donnell, CJ Stander.

Replacements: Kevin O’Byrne, James Cronin, Ciaran Parker, Billy Holland, Chris Cloete, Duncan Williams, JJ Hanrahan, Rory Scannell.