RugbyTeam Selections

Garry Ringrose returns to Leinster side for semi-final showdown with Bulls

URC team news: Munster make four changes for home semi-final clash with Glasgow Warriors

Garry Ringrose returns to the Leinster side for the first time since January for the URC semi-final away to the Bulls. Photograph: Christiaan Kotze/Inpho/Steve Haag Sports

Leinster have received a huge boost ahead of their United Rugby Championship semi-final away to the Bulls at Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria on Saturday (3pm Irish time, live on RTÉ One) with confirmation that Garry Ringrose is fit and returns to join Robbie Henshaw in midfield.

Ringrose returns for the first time since January and is the only change made by head coach Leo Cullen from the side that saw off Ulster in last weekend’s quarter-finals at the Aviva Stadium.

Among the replacements, Jack Conan returns after missing last weekend’s win, while Jamie Osborne moves to the bench following Ringrose’s return.

Speaking ahead of the game, Leinster forwards coach Robin McBryde said the team are relishing the challenge of playing knock-out rugby in South Africa.


“It’s a different route we have taken this season. We failed to reach the final on previous occasions. We’re coming to a tough place, with a team full of internationals. You can react positively, to having to do things the hard way.”

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Munster have made two changes for their semi-final against Glasgow Warriors on Saturday evening (6pm, live on TG4)

There are four changes and one positional switch to the side that beat Ospreys in last week’s quarter-final, with Mike Haley and Alex Nankivell coming into the backline as Simon Zebo moves to the wing, with Fineen Wycherley and Jack O’Donoghue starting in the pack.

Haley, Shane Daly and Zebo are named in the back three as Nankivell returns from an ankle injury to renew his centre partnership with Antoine Frisch. Craig Casey and Jack Crowley are the starting halfbacks for the fifth game in succession.

Jeremy Loughman, Niall Scannell and Stephen Archer pack down in an unchanged frontrow with Fineen Wycherley and captain Tadhg Beirne in the engine room. Peter O’Mahony, John Hodnett and Jack O’Donoghue complete the side.

Diarmuid Barron, John Ryan and Oli Jager provide the frontrow back-up. RG Snyman, Gavin Coombes and Alex Kendellen complete the forward cover. Conor Murray and Seán O’Brien are the backline replacements.

On the injury front, Calvin Nash was unavailable due to a leg knock.

BULLS: Willie le Roux; Sergeal Petersen, David Kriel, Harold Vorster, Devon Williams; Johan Goosen, Embrose Papier; Gerhard Steenekamp, Johan Grobbelaar, Wilco Louw; Ruan Vermaak, Ruan Nortje (capt); Marco Van Staden, Elrigh Louw, Cameron Hanekom

Replacements: Akker van der Merwe, Simphiwe Matanzima, Francois Klopper, Reinhardt Ludwig, Nizaam Carr, Keagan Johannes, Chris Smith, Cornel Smit.

LEINSTER: Jimmy O’Brien; Jordan Larmour, Garry Ringrose, Robbie Henshaw, James Lowe; Ross Byrne, Jamison Gibson-Park; Andrew Porter, Dan Sheehan, Tadhg Furlong; Joe McCarthy, James Ryan (capt); Ryan Baird, Josh van der Flier, Caelan Doris.

Replacements: Rónan Kelleher, Cian Healy, Michael Ala’alatoa, Ross Molony, Jack Conan, Luke McGrath, Ciarán Frawley, Jamie Osborne.

Referee: Sam Grove-White (Sco).

MUNSTER: Mike Haley; Shane Daly, Antoine Frisch, Alex Nankivell, Simon Zebo; Jack Crowley, Craig Casey; Jeremy Loughman, Niall Scannell, Stephen Archer; Fineen Wycherley, Tadhg Beirne (capt); Peter O’Mahony, John Hodnett, Jack O’Donoghue.

Replacements: Diarmuid Barron, John Ryan, Oli Jager, RG Snyman, Gavin Coombes, Conor Murray, Seán O’Brien, Alex Kendellen.

GLASGOW WARRIORS: Josh McKay; Sebastian Cancelliere, Huw Jones, Sione Tuipulotu, Kyle Steyn (capt); Tom Jordan, George Horne; Jamie Bhatti, Johnny Matthews, Zander Fagerson; Scott Cummings, Richie Gray; Matt Fagerson, Rory Darge, Jack Dempsey.

Replacements: George Turner, Oli Kebble, Murphy Walker, Max Williamson, Euan Ferrie, Henco Venter, Jamie Dobie, Ross Thompson.

Referee: Andrea Piardi (Ita).