Jump to main content


Kleyn Hits Half-Century As Munster Make A Dozen Changes

Kleyn Hits Half-Century As Munster Make A Dozen Changes

The Munster team to play Leinster in Saturday’s GUINNESS PRO14 derby match at a sold-out Thomond Park (kick-off 5.15pm) has been finalised by head coach Johann van Graan.

There are twelve changes to the side beaten 19-12 by Ulster in Belfast last Friday night, with CJ Stander leading the province from the back row in the absence of regular captain Peter O’Mahony.

Jean Kleyn, one of the three changes to the Munster team that went down to Castres, features in the second row as he makes his 50th provincial appearance. The other alterations from the Castres game are centre Dan Goggin and 21-year-old Academy graduate Fineen Wycherley who starts on the blindside.

Google Ad Manager – 300×250 – In Article

Mike Haley continues at full-back with wingers Andrew Conway and Keith Earls completing the back-three. Goggin forms the centre partnership with Rory Scannell, with former Leinster out-half Joey Carbery and Conor Murray directing operations from half-back.

The hosts line up with Dave Kilcoyne, hooker Niall Scannell and John Ryan in the front row, Kleyn is joined by Tadhg Beirne in the engine room, and Cork youngster Wycherley combines with Chris Cloete and Stander in the loose forwards.

Meanwhile, prop Brian Scott underwent surgery last week for a foot injury sustained while playing for his club side Cork Constitution. He has an expected return-to-play time frame of four to six months. James Hart (knee), Rhys Marshall (hamstring) and Chris Farrell (thigh) were reintegrated into team training this week.

Looking forward to locking horns with Munster’s arch rivals again, Johann van Graan said: “The last time we lost a game in Thomond Park was against Leinster last year in the same fixture. They had a very good start to the game and we had a very good second half.

“There were one or two individual moments that made a difference in that game (a 34-24 defeat) and I believe it will be the same on the weekend. There are two quality sides playing against each other and we’ve got most of our squad available for this game.

“I believe it will come down to two things. One, each individual player will play to the best of his ability for both teams and the team that uses the opportunities and that is something we’d like to improve on.”

In supporting Munster’s nominated charities this season, Cliona’s Foundation and the Irish Cancer Society, one euro from each match programme sold at Saturday’s interprovincial derby in Limerick will be donated to the worthy causes.

MUNSTER (v Leinster): Mike Haley; Andrew Conway, Dan Goggin, Rory Scannell, Keith Earls; Joey Carbery, Conor Murray; Dave Kilcoyne, Niall Scannell, John Ryan, Jean Kleyn, Tadhg Beirne, Fineen Wycherley, Chris Cloete, CJ Stander (capt).

Replacements: Kevin O’Byrne, Jeremy Loughman, Stephen Archer, Billy Holland, Arno Botha, Alby Mathewson, Tyler Bleyendaal, Darren Sweetnam.