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Earls & Kearney Return To Starting Lineups For Munster & Leinster

The Munster and Leinster teams have been announced for their respective games against Glasgow Warriors and Benetton Rugby on Saturday. 

Nine of the 11 Munster players called up to the Ireland squad earlier this week are included in the 23.

Peter O’Mahony captains the team and Keith Earls, fresh from signing a contract extension, returns as one of seven changes to the side that secured a bonus-point win against Gloucester in the Champions Cup last week.

Keith Earls

Sammy Arnold is included having been named in an Ireland squad for the first time this week with Alby Mathewson and JJ Hanrahan also coming in to form a new half-back partnership.

The three final changes are in the pack with hooker Niall Scannell returning from a knock as Billy Holland and Chris Cloete are also included.

Mike Haley starts at full-back with Andrew Conway and Earls on either flank.

Rory Scannell and Arnold pair up in the centre with Mathewson and Hanrahan at scrum-half and out-half respectively.

James Cronin and John Ryan pack down on either side of Niall Scannell with Jean Kleyn and Holland resuming their partnership in the engine room.

O’Mahony, Cloete and CJ Stander complete the side with Stander set to make his 120th appearance for the province.

Munster: Mike Haley; Andrew Conway, Sammy Arnold, Rory Scannell, Keith Earls; JJ Hanrahan, Alby Mathewson; James Cronin, Niall Scannell, John Ryan; Jean Kleyn, Billy Holland; Peter O’Mahony (C), Chris Cloete, CJ Stander.

Replacements: Kevin O’Byrne, Dave Kilcoyne, Stephen Archer, Fineen Wycherley, Arno Botha, Neil Cronin, Ian Keatley, Darren Sweetnam.

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For Leinster, Rob Kearney comes in at full-back having recovered from the tightness in his quad that forced him to miss last weekend’s trip to Toulouse.

Adam Byrne comes on to the right wing having played for the Leinster ‘A’ team last weekend in the final of the Celtic Cup. With Byrne coming on to the right wing, Joe Tomane moves across to the left wing.

Robbie Henshaw and Rory O’Loughlin are in the centre with Jamison Gibson-Park and Ross Byrne in the half backs.

Jack McGrath, James Tracy and Tadhg Furlong are in the front row, with Scott Fardy and James Ryan behind them in the engine room.

Seán O’Brien captains the side for the first time this season from blind side flanker, with Dan Leavy back from a calf injury at openside and Max Deegan completing the pack at number eight.

On the bench, Academy player Conor O’Brien is due to make his first senior appearance of the season. The Westmeath man has three caps already to his name in the Guinness PRO14.

Leinster: Rob Kearney, Adam Byrne, Rory O’Loughlin, Robbie Henshaw, Joe Tomane, Ross Byrne, Jamison Gibson-Park, Jack McGrath, James Tracy, Tadhg Furlong, Scott Fardy, James Ryan, Seán O’Brien (C), Dan Leavy Max Deegan.

Replacements: Bryan Byrne, Ed Byrne, Andrew Porter, Ross Molony, Rhys Ruddock, Hugh O’Sullivan, Noel Reid, Conor O’Brien.

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Munster take on Conference A leaders Glasgow Warriors in the Guinness PRO14 at Thomond Park on Saturday at 5.15pm, while Leinster face Benetton Rugby in the Stadio Monigo at 16:00.

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Author: The PA Team

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