Discipline will be crucial for Connacht as Ospreys carry Biggar threat and quick backline
Visit of Welsh side will be a challenge for Pat Lam’s team after losing to Ulster last week
Craig Ronaldson: starts at outhalf against Ospreys instead of veteran Dan Parks. Photograph: Inpho
Discipline will be at the forefront of Connacht’s thinking in Galway when Ospreys arrive this evening. With outhalf Dan Biggar’s strike from the boot just shy of the 80 per cent mark, it’s likely Connacht will be punished more than they were last week against Ulster for any indiscretions.
Ospreys arrive with a quick backline and some big names in the pack. Jeff Hassler has also shown a nose for the line. The Canadian marked his first start last week against Edinburgh with a try after three minutes.
Alun Wyn Jones in the secondrow with Adam and Duncan Jones in the frontrow bring serious heft and experience to the Osprey pack.
Connacht coach Pat Lam has made four changes from last week. Hooker Seán Henry comes in for the injured Jason Harris-Wright and Andrew Browne starts in the backrow at blindside.
In the backs Fionn Carr is replaced by Dannie Poolman with summer signing Craig Ronaldson starting at outhalf instead of Dan Parks. Willie Faloon is also unavailable through injury. Parks and Carr are named on the replacements bench. “Losing both Willie (Faloon) and Jason (Harris-Wright) was a big loss for us as a team but it presents an opportunity for other, young players to step up,” said Lam.
Connacht won this equivalent fixture in Galway last season, 22-10, their first victory over Ospreys since 2008.