Preview: Leinster v Glasgow Warriors

Date published: October 22 2015

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Leinster head coach Leo Cullen has made seven changes to the starting XV that lost away to the Scarlets last weekend as Leinster welcome the reigning PRO12 champions, Glasgow Warriors, to the RDS.

Returning players include Ben Te'o and Jack Conan who have shaken off calf and ankle knocks respectively. 

Also returning to the starting XV are Ireland World Cup players Mike McCarthy and Rhys Ruddock who were late additions to the Irish squad. Ruddock came off the bench in the quarter-final defeat to Argentina. 

For the fourth game in a row it is as you were in the back three with Isa Nacewa captaining the side from full-back and Garry Ringrose on the right wing and Fergus McFadden on the left. Between them they have scored four tries and 43 points in the four PRO12 rounds this season. 

Ben Te'o has shaken off the calf injury that kept him out of last week's trip to Parc y Scarlets and takes his place in the outside centre channel, with Noel Reid inside him at 12. 

In the half backs Luke McGrath starts at scrum-half for the third time in five games, while Cathal Marsh is outside him at 10 having won a Man of the Match award last time out at the RDS against the Dragons. 

Irish internationals Michael Bent and Marty Moore are once again selected at loosehead and tighthead prop respectively, while Aaron Dundon comes back in to the side at hooker. 

Mike McCarthy, who missed the Scarlets game due to his World Cup call up comes back in to the second row to partner UCD's Ross Molony. 

There are two changes in the back row with Rhys Ruddock coming back in at blindside flanker and Jack Conan selected at eight having recovered from the ankle injury suffered in the warm up before the Dragons game. Josh van der Flier completes the back row at openside. 

Among the replacements, Tadhg Furlong is in line to make his first appearance of the season for Leinster having played against Wales and England in the pre-World Cup warm up games and against Romania in the World Cup. 

Also among the replacements is Isaac Boss who was called up to the Irish squad after the Scarlets game last Friday following the withdrawal of Jared Payne. 

Meanwhile, Italian international Simone Favaro has been named in Glasgow Warriors starting XV.

The flanker, who scored a last-minute try to secure a bonus-point victory over the Dragons at Scotstoun last Friday, starts at open-side flanker in place of Chris Fusaro.

Six players return to the squad, having featured for Scotland at the Rugby World Cup, with Sean Lamont, Richie Vernon, Duncan Weir, Tim Swinson, Ryan Wilson and Kevin Bryce all included.

The Warriors were unbeaten against Leinster last season having won at Scotstoun in September and drawn 34-34 at the RDS in March.

After reaching the milestone of 100 caps for Scotland at the Rugby World Cup, Lamont returns at full-back, with Rory Hughes moving to the left wing and Taqele Naiyaravoro starting on the opposite side.

Vernon makes his first appearance for the Warriors since last season's final at outside centre, replacing Alex Dunbar, who picked up a knock on his chest last week. Fraser Lyle is once again named at inside centre.

Weir returns at fly-half, with Mike Blair replacing Grayson Hart at scrum-half.

It's the same front-row which started the win over the Dragons, with Pat MacArthur overcoming injury to start at hooker, having only lasted two minutes of the last game. Alex Allan is at loose-head and Zander Fagerson has been named at tight-head.

Swinson also returns from international duty and partners Scott Cummings in the engine room. It will be 18-year-old Cummings fifth consecutive start for the Warriors.

Rob Harley moves from second-row to blind-side flanker, with Scotland international Wilson returning at number eight and Favaro wearing the number seven jersey.

Scotland hooker Kevin Bryce has been named amongst the replacements, along with Rory Clegg, who could make his final appearance for the Warriors before moving to France.

Form: The Leinstermen' s only defeat at the RDS Arena in their last 33 matches in all competitions was 14-16 to Newport Gwent Dragons in the PRO12 on 15th February. Glasgow Warriors gained their first maximum point victory this campaign with their 29-15 win over Dragons last Friday. The Warriors have won just one of their last five away games in the competition: 31-13 at Connacht in April. Warriors were unbeaten against Leinster last season having won at Scotstoun in September and drawn 34-all at the RDS Arena in March. Glasgow's only previous success on Leinster soil in any competition was 23-19 at the RDS in the PRO12 in September 2011.

The teams:

Leinster: 15 Isa Nacewa (c), 14 Garry Ringrose, 13 Ben Te'o, 12 Noel Reid, 11 Fergus McFadden, 10 Cathal Marsh, 9 Luke McGrath, 8 Jack Conan, 7 Josh van der Flier, 6 Rhys Ruddock, 5 Mike McCarthy, 4 Ross Molony, 3 Marty Moore, 2 Aaron Dundon, 1 Michael Bent
Replacements: 16 James Tracy, 17 Peter Dooley, 18 Tadhg Furlong, 19 Dominic Ryan, 20 Daniel Leavy, 21 Isaac Boss, 22 Ross Byrne, 23 Cian Kelleher

Glasgow Warriors: 15 Sean Lamont, 14 Taqele Naiyaravoro, 13 Richie Vernon, 12 Fraser Lyle, 11 Rory Hughes, 10 Duncan Weir, 9 Mike Blair, 8 Ryan Wilson, 7 Simone Favaro, 6 Rob Harley (c), 5 Scott Cummings, 4 Tim Swinson, 3 Zander Fagerson, 2 Pat MacArthur, 1 Alex Allan.
Replacements: 16 Kevin Bryce, 17 Jerry Yanuyanutawa, 18 Mike Cusack, 19 Greg Peterson, 20 Adam Ashe, 21 Hugh Blake, 22 Grayson Hart, 23 Rory Clegg.

Date: Saturday, October 23
Venue: RDS Arena, Dublin
Kick-off: 19:45 local (18:45 GMT)
Referee: Ian Davies (WRU, 36th competition game)
Assistant Referees: Leo Colgan, Olly Hodges (both IRFU)
TMO: Dermot Moloney (IRFU)

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