Leinster ring the changes for trip to Newport

Matt O’Connor brings in 12 new faces for Dragons clash with one eye on Toulon

Shane Jennings will captain Leinster for Sunday’s Pro 12 fixture away at Newport Gwent Dragons. Photograph: Inpho

Shane Jennings will captain Leinster for Sunday’s Pro 12 fixture away at Newport Gwent Dragons. Photograph: Inpho

 

Leinster boss Matt O’Connor has made 12 changes to the side which beat Bath to progress to the Champions Cup semi-final for Sunday’s Pro 12 fixture against Newport Gwent Dragons.

With a trip to play Toulon in the Stade Veledrome on April 19th looming the majority of the province’s international cohort will sit out the fixture at Rodney Parade, with seven new faces in the pack and five in the back line.

Fergus McFadden has failed to pass the return to play protocols following his collision with Kyle Eastmond during the 18-15 win at the Aviva Stadium last weekend, meaning Dave Kearney steps in on the right wing.

Kearney is joined by Zane Kicrhner and Darragh Fanning in the back three, while Gordon D’Arcy returns to the fold in midfield alongside Ben Te’o who retains his place in the side.

Jimmy Gopperth starts at outhalf, with Eoin Reddan taking the number nine jersey.

In the pack Jack McGrath, Richardt Strauss and Marty Moore, who all came off the bench against Bath, start in the frontrow, while Ben Marshall partners Mike McCarthy at lock.

Shane Jennings captains the side from seven, with Dominic Ryan and Jack Conan joining him in the backrow.

There are places on the bench for Jordi Murphy and Luke Fitzgerald.

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