James Lowe returns to add energy to Leinster

Plenty of new faces get a chance under the lights as Leo Cullen’s men face Ospreys

James Lowe during a Leinster squad session at UCD. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

James Lowe during a Leinster squad session at UCD. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

 

Leinster have 14 players with Ireland, Ospreys 10 with Wales, Tonga and Namibia. That means some more new faces on both sides with Rowan Osbourne one of the fresh set for Leinster.

The Trinity scrumhalf has been named on the home bench and is expected to make his Pro14 debut, having played in Leinster’s pre-season friendly against Coventry.

Sharp and quick the engineering student, who has played for Leinster A, is back-up for Jamison Gibson-Park as coach Leo Cullen hopes to make it victory number two after their opening win away to Benetton last week.

First appearance

Dynamic James Lowe comes into the side for his first appearance since being injured in May and with Fergus McFadden and Hugo Keenan, it’s also a new-look back three. With Devin Toner and captain Scott Fardy the starting locks provide the bulk of experience in the pack, prop Michael Bent adding there too.

Ospreys, struggling without their international players, were pretty much beaten out the gates 38-14 by Ulster in Kingspan last week and while they will be looking for a quick bounce back, it is hard to see last year’s champions being the team to provide that.

LEINSTER : H Keenan; F McFadden, R O’Loughlin, J Tomane, J Lowe; R Byrne, J Gibson-Park; P Dooley, R Kelleher, M Bent, D Toner, S Fardy (C), J Murphy, W Conors, C Doris. Replacements: J Tracy, M Milne, V Abdaladze, R Molony, M Deegan, R Osbourne, H Byrne, C O’Brien

OSPREYS: C Evans; L Morgan, S Williams, T Thomas-Wheeler, K Giles; L Price, S Venter; R Jones, S Parry, T Boths, D Lydiate, L Ashley, O Cracknell, S Cross, D baker. Replacements: S Otten, G Thomas, G Gajion, B Glynn, G Evans, M Aubrey, T Williams, H Dirksen

Referee: S Berry (SARU)

Verdict: Leinster win

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