Munster and Ulster name teams for Thomond Park clash

Alby Mathewson makes his Munster debut, as Andrew Warwick set to win 100th cap

Alby Mathewson during Munster training at UL. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Alby Mathewson during Munster training at UL. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

 

Munster have made eight changes to their team to face Ulster at Thomond Park on Saturday night.

Head coach Johann van Graan has handed Alby Mathewson his Munster debut at scrumhalf as Keith Earls and Niall Scannell make their first starts of the season.

Mike Haley, Dan Goggin, Earls, Mathewson, Dave Kilcoyne, Scannell, Billy Holland and Tommy O’Donnell all come into the side.

Haley starts at fullback with Andrew Conway and Earls on the flanks. Rory Scannell partners Goggin in the centres with outhalf Joey Carbery alongside Mathewson in the half-backs.

Kilcoyne, Niall Scannell and Stephen Archer make up the front row with Holland returning from injury to partner Tadhg Beirne in the secondrow.

Captain Peter O’Mahony, O’Donnell and CJ Stander complete the side.

Meanwhile Ulster prop Andrew Warwick will reach the 100 cap milestone, with fellow Ballymena RFC clubman Adam McBurney selected for his first start of the season beside him at hooker. Ross Kane completes the front row.

Ulster head coach Dan McFarland has named his team to take on Munster this weekend. Photograph: Matt Mackey/Inpho
Ulster head coach Dan McFarland has named his team to take on Munster this weekend. Photograph: Matt Mackey/Inpho

Alan O’Connor will captain the side from the secondrow, with Iain Henderson returning to partner him in the engine room.

In the back row, flankers Matthew Rea and Nick Timoney are named at blindside and openside respectively, with Jean Deysel packing down at number eight.

John Cooney returns from the scalp laceration sustained in the win over Southern Kings a fortnight ago to join Billy Burns at halfback. Angus Curtis will also earn his first start of the season, as he is given the nod to partner Darren Cave in midfield.

Wingers Angus Kernohan and Craig Gilroy join Peter Nelson in the back three as the fullback runs out for the 50th time in an Ulster jersey.

Munster: Mike Haley; Andrew Conway, Dan Goggin, Rory Scannell, Keith Earls; Joey Carbery, Alby Mathewson; Dave Kilcoyne, Niall Scannell, Stephen Archer; Tadhg Beirne, Billy Holland; Peter O’Mahony (capt), Tommy O’Donnell, CJ Stander.

Replacements: Kevin O’Byrne, James Cronin, Ciaran Parker, Jean Kleyn, Arno Botha, Duncan Williams, Ian Keatley, Sammy Arnold.

Ulster: Peter Nelson; Craig Gilroy, Darren Cave, Angus Curtis, Angus Kernohan; Billy Burns, John Cooney; Andrew Warwick, Adam McBurney, Ross Kane; Alan O’Connor (capt), Iain Henderson; Matthew Rea, Nick Timoney, Jean Deysel.

Replacements: John Andrew, Eric O’Sullivan, Tom O’Toole, Kieran Treadwell, Clive Ross, Dave Shanahan, Michael Lowry, James Hume.

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