Connacht aiming to get back on track in Treviso

Benetton without a host of players while visitors keen to make up for defeat to Zebre

Tiernan O’Halloran: returns to the Connacht side for the game against Benetton  Treviso. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Tiernan O’Halloran: returns to the Connacht side for the game against Benetton Treviso. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

 

Benetton v Connacht, Stadio Comunale di Monigo (12.0, Irish time)

In theory there isn’t a better time for Connacht to be making a trip to Treviso given that their hosts are without 12 players on duty with Italy and another seven who are absent through injury.

However the Italian club have won seven matches this season and there is still more than a smattering of players with Test match rugby experience in the side chosen by Kieran Crowley. The progress the club has made in terms of both results and performances this season has been impressive.

Connacht are coming off the bitter disappointment of last week’s home defeat to Zebre and coach Kieran Keane will expect a positive reaction.

Tiernan O’Halloran, Denis Buckley, Sean O’Brien and Jarrad Butler return to the side after injury, while a fit-again Niyi Adeolokun is included amongst the replacements.

Ultan Dillane has been released from the national squad for this match but unlike his team-mates will return to Dublin after the match to rejoin the Ireland set-up while Connacht head for South Africa and their two-game mini-tour against the Cheetahs and the Southern Kings.

Keane admitted: “We have a number of players coming back from injury which will be a big boost against Treviso. They are on a great run of wins and I’m sure they will be targeting us especially when they have been so competitive at home this season.

“The majority of the squad will travel on to South Africa, but we have put plans in place for replacements to join the squad after the game in Italy. These two games will really test the depth of our squad.”

BENETTON: L Sperandio; A Bronzini, T Iannone, L Morisi, M Ioane; M Banks, T Tebaldi; F Zani, T Baravalle, M Zanusso; M Lazzaroni, I Herbst; A Sgarbi (capt), M Barbini, W Douglas. Replacements: H Faiva, R Brugnara, C Traore, M Fuser, N Manu, G Bronzini, M Zanon, M Tagicakibau.

CONNACHT: T O’Halloran; C Kelleher, E Griffin, T Farrell, M Healy; J Carty, C Blade; D Buckley, T McCartney, F Bealham; G Thornbury, J Cannon; S O’Brien, J Butler, J Muldoon (capt). Replacements: D Heffernan, D Coulson, D Robertson-McCoy, U Dillane, E Masterson, J Mitchell, C Ronaldson, N Adeolokun.

Referee: L Linton (Scotland)

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.