Irish duo start for Munster against Glasgow

Colm Kinsella

Reporter:

Colm Kinsella

Irish duo start for Munster against Glasgow

Munster coach Anthony Foley

IRISH players Tommy O’Donnell and Donnacha Ryan will both start for Munster in their crucial Guinness Pro12 clash with holders Glasgow Warriors at Rugby Park this Friday night, 7.35pm.

O’Donnell and Ryan were released back from Ireland’s 6 Nations squad by head coach Joe Schmidt along with prop James Cronin who is listed among the replacements for the tie with the Warriors.

In all, Munster coach Anthony Foley makes five changes in personnel from the side which lost to Ospreys for the game with Glasgow.

In the front row, hooker Niall Scannell packs down between Dave Kilcoyne and John Ryan.

Captain Billy Holland makes the positional switch to start alongside Ryan in the second row for the first time this season, while in the back row, O'Donnell starts at seven with Jack O'Donoghue moving to six andRobin Copeland remaining at 8.

The first of two changes across the backline comes in the half-backs with Tomás O'Leary resuming his partnership with Ian Keatley. The second is seen in midfield where David Johnston comes in to form an all-academy centre pairing with Rory Scannell. Francis Saili is ruled out as he is following return to play protocols  after suffering a concussion against Ospreys last weekend.

Ronan O'Mahony, Darren Sweetnam and Andrew Conway again make up the back-three.

Should he feature from the bench, academy back-row Conor Oliver will make his first competitive appearance for Munster, while Johnny Holland has recovered from a long-term hamstring injury to win inclusion in his first PRO12 squad since November 2014.

Munster currently sit in sixth place in the Pro12 table, seven points off the top four places. Friday night’s game is live on Sky Sports.

MUNSTER: Andrew Conway; Darren Sweetnam, David Johnston, Rory Scannell, Ronan O'Mahony; Ian Keatley, Tomás O'Leary; Dave Kilcoyne, Niall Scannell, John Ryan; Donnacha Ryan, Billy Holland - capt.; Jack O'Donoghue, Tommy O'Donnell, Robin Copeland. Replacements: Mike Sherry, James Cronin, Mario Sagario, Dave Foley, Conor Oliver, Duncan Williams, Johnny Holland, Cian Bohane.