Leinster have been forced into a late change ahead of this afternoon’s clash with Toulouse at the Aviva Stadium with the news that Rhys Ruddock has been forced out after falling ill.
Ruddock has been replaced at openside flanker by Australian, Scott Fardy with Caelan Doris promoted to the substitutes bench where he will make his European debut if called upon.
The loss of Ruddock is surely a blow to Leinster given his calming influence on pitch and ability to lead the side having captained both his province and country on numerous occasions.
However, Fardy is a more than capable replacement having starred for Leinster en route to European glory in last year’s Champions Cup.
The 39-year-old former Australian international should fit seamlessly into the back-row alongside Sean O’Brien and the in-form Jack Conan.
The late change has added to Leo Cullen and Leinster’s struggles as Doris joins Max Deegan as the only back-row options for the European champions. Doris has enjoyed a breakthrough season with Leinster. The former Irish U20s captain has made 14 Guinness PRO 14 appearances this season but as of yet has not made a single appearance in Europe.
Leinster’s opponents, Toulouse will line out as scheduled earlier this week.