Racing’s Simon Zebo to start at fullback in Champions Cup final

Former Munster teammate Donnacha Ryan has been named on the bench

Simon Zebo will line out at fullback for the Champions Cup final on Saturday. Photo: Jean Catuffe/Getty Images

Simon Zebo will line out at fullback for the Champions Cup final on Saturday. Photo: Jean Catuffe/Getty Images

 

Champions Cup final: Exeter Chiefs v Racing 92

Kick-off: 4.45pm, Saturday. Venue: Ashton Gate. On TV: Live on BT Sport, Virgin Media Two and Channel 4.

Simon Zebo has been named at fullback in the Racing 92 team that will contest the Heineken Champions Cup final against the Exeter Chiefs at the Ashton Gate stadium in Bristol.

Fellow Irish international and former Munster teammate Donnacha Ryan is named among the replacements as a fit again Bernard Le Roux is chosen to partner ex All Black Dominic Bird in the secondrow.

Henry Chavancy returns to captain the French side replacing Olivier Klemenczak in the centre with Louis Dupichot coming in for Teddy Thomas on the right wing; the latter’s absence a blow. Australian international Kurtley Beale is named on the bench.

Exeter Chiefs also have a couple of Irish players in their matchday 23, Ian Whitten will wear the number 12 jersey while the 36-year-old Sandy Park icon Gareth Steenson, who retires from rugby after the match, is named among the replacements.

The Chiefs have made a change in the backrow with Jacques Vermeulen replacing Sam Skinner, the latter named among the replacements, which also contains Jannes Kirsten in a change from the semi-final personnel.

Racing 92: S Zebo; L Dupichot, V Vakatawa, H Chavancy (capt), J Imhoff; F Russell, T Ibaren; E Ben Arous, C Chat, G Henri Colombe; B Le Roux, D Bird; W Lauret, F Sanconnie, A Claassen.

Replacements: T Baubigny, H Kolingar, A Oz, D Ryan, B Palu, M Machenaud, O Klemenczak, K Beale.

Exeter Chiefs: S Hogg; J Nowell, H Slade, I Whitten, T O’Flaherty; J Simmonds (capt), J Maunder; A Hepburn, L Cowan-Dickie, H Williams; J Gray, J Hill; D Ewers, J Vermeulen, S Simmonds.

Replacements: J Yeandle, B Moon, T Francis, S Skinner, J Kirsten, S Hildago-Clyne, G Steenson, O Devoto.

Referee: N Owens (Wales) .

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