O'Driscoll rested for Scarlets game
Rugby:Leinster coach Joe Schmidt has opted to hold Brian O’Driscoll in reserve for the game against Scarlets at the RDS tomorrow (6pm), with Fergus McFadden preferred at outside centre for the Heineken Cup pool five match.
McFadden is one of 14 Ireland players in the side but his international captain, who has recently returned to action after ankle ligament surgery, is not one of them. With a tougher test away to Exeter Chiefs on the horizon, O’Driscoll “is being managed” having only returned last weekend.
The final pool game against Exeter will count for little, however, if Leinster fail to pick up a bonus win at home to Scarlets, and Schmidt has left little else to chance.
The classy Isa Nacewa is the only non-Ireland international named, as is fullback Rob Kearney and winger Luke Fitzgerald, while Isaac Boss is set to partner outhalf Jonathan Sexton.
The frontrow is unchanged, with Cian Healy set to make his 108th appearance alongside hooker Seán Cronin and prop Mike Ross. Captain Leo Cullen will partner Devin Toner at secondrow, with Seán O'Brien, Shane Jennings and number eight Jamie Heaslipin the backrow. Kevin McLaughlin is rested with a shoulder injury but may face Exeter.
Scarlets coach Simon Easterby has not been able to include giant Welsh winger George North, who is struggling with a neck injury.
The former Ireland international saw his side walloped 47-17 at Ravenhill last week, but insists his side are not about to roll over for anyone.
"We're entering into two Heineken games one against the reigning champions, then next week against one of the top two or three sides in the competition (group leaders Clermont Auvergne), so in three games we've played against some of the very best in Europe.
"These games show us where we are as a group; equally they're important in terms of making a mark to get us back on track for our season ahead. As coaches and players we respect this tournament, our supporters and what our region has achieved so we'll only ever being going out in the next couple of weeks to try and win two games - that will never change."
Leinster (v Scarlets):R Kearney; I Nacewa, F McFadden, G D'Arcy, L Fitzgerald; J Sexton, I Boss; C Healy, S Cronin, M Ross; L Cullen (capt), D Toner; S O'Brien, S Jennings, J Heaslip. Replacements:A Dundon, H van der Merwe, M Bent, T Denton, R Ruddock, E Reddan, I Madigan, B O'Driscoll
Scarlets:L Williams, A Fenby, G Maule, S Williams, K Phillips; Aled Thomas, Tavis Knoyle; P John, K Owens, J Adriaanse; G Earle, R Kelly; R McCusker (capt), J Turnbull, K Murphy. Replacements:M Rees, R Jones, S Lee, J Synman, S Timani, G Davies, J Davies, A Warren