Munster look to knockout stages with unchanged side

Johann van Graan names the same side that lost to Racing 92 for their clash with Castres

Peter O’Mahony will captain the Munster side to take on Castres Olympique in the Champions Cup on Sunday. Photo: Dan Sheirdan/Inpho

Peter O’Mahony will captain the Munster side to take on Castres Olympique in the Champions Cup on Sunday. Photo: Dan Sheirdan/Inpho

 

For the first time this season, Munster have named an unchanged side for their Champions Cup meeting with Castres Olympique at Thomond Park as they look to secure a knockout place.

Following Sunday’s 34-30 defeat to Racing 92 in Paris, as expected, Peter O’Mahony has recovered from an ankle knock to captain the side.

International hooker Niall Scannell returns from the rib injury sustained against Ulster on New Year’s Day to be named in the replacements.

The all-international backline remains intact once again with Simon Zebo, Andrew Conway and last weekend’s double try scorer Keith Earls forming the back three.

Rory Scannell partners Chris Farrell in midfield, while Conor Murray and Ian Keatley continue as the halfbacks.

The front row is made up of Stephen Archer, Dave Kilcoyne and Rhys Marshall as Billy Holland is partnered by Jean Kleyn in the second row. The pack is completed by a back row of O’Mahony, Chris Cloete and CJ Stander.

Niall Scannell, James Cronin and John Ryan make up the front row replacements. Darren O’Shea and Jack O’Donoghue complete the forward reserves as Duncan Williams, JJ Hanrahan and Alex Wootton provide the backline cover.

Munster team to face Castres Olympique (Champions Cup Pool Four, Thomond Park, Sunday 21st January, kick off: 1pm – live on Sky Sports Arena and RTÉ Radio)

Simon Zebo; Andrew Conway, Chris Farrell, Rory Scannell, Keith Earls; Ian Keatley, Conor Murray; Dave Kilcoyne, Rhys Marshall, Stephen Archer; Jean Kleyn, Billy Holland; Peter O’Mahony (C), Chris Cloete, CJ Stander.

Replacements: Niall Scannell, James Cronin, John Ryan, Darren O’Shea, Jack O’Donoghue, Duncan Williams, JJ Hanrahan, Alex Wootton.

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