Preview: Munster v Glasgow

Date published: October 16 2015

1022.6666666666666x767__origin__0x0_Ian_Keatley_Munster_Pro12_2015

CJ Stander will captain a Munster side against Cardiff Blues this weekend that sees six changes to the starting XV that defeated Glasgow 

Tomás O'Leary and Denis Hurley are included in a matchday squad for the first time this season.

It's an all-new front row of Dave Kilcoyne, Mike Sherry and BJ Botha with Mark Chisholm and Dave Foley continuing in the second row. CJ Stander will captain the side from the back of the scrum at number 8 with Dave O'Callaghan and openside Jack O'Donoghue completing the back row.

Duncan Williams and Ian Keatley again pair up in the half-backs while academy player Rory Scannell and Francis Saili return to the starting line-up in midfield.

Two changes in the back-three see Shane Monahan make his second competitive start on the wing with Andrew Conway switching to the full-back position, while Gerhard van den Heever remains on the opposite flank.

Having successfully completed their rehabilitation both O'Leary and Hurley are in line to make their first appearances of the season after being named on the bench, and should John Ryan feature, the prop will win his 50th cap for the province.

Meanwhile, hooker Matthew Rees makes his first start of the PRO12 season as Cardiff Blues travel to Ireland.

Former Wales international Rees is drafted into the front row and is also handed the captaincy for the encounter at the Irish Independent Park.

Head Coach Danny Wilson makes a total of four changes to the side that narrowly lost out to Connacht last time out.

Lock James Down is called up to the second row alongside Lou Reed who makes his 50th appearance for Cardiff Blues.

Manoa Vosawai is named at number eight and will join forces with flankers Josh Turnbull and Ellis Jenkins in the back row. Josh Navidi misses the game through injury.

The final change to the starting line-up comes on the wing with Wales U20 ace Garyn Smith selected.

Macauley Cook and Jevon Groves are among the replacements and young wing Harry Davies could make his PRO12 debut after being named on the bench.

Wilson said: “Munster have been strong so far this season and have some quality players.They have big ball carriers and play a power game – we need to match that.

“We will give them a huge amount of respect away from home, but at the same time we feel we are building something and are hoping that we can gain some momentum and good results in these away games to hold us in good stead for the rest of the season.”

Form: Munster are one of three sides to have made a perfect start to the new PRO12 campaign and have won their last eleven matches at Irish Independent Park since Cardiff Blues beat them there in January 2013. Cardiff Blues may have started the season with a win and a pair of defeats but they are the top try scorers so far in the PRO12 with 15 in the first three rounds. The Blues have won just once away from home in the PRO12 since September 2014:11-9 at Dragons on New Year's Day 2015. The Welshmen's solitary victory in their last ten encounters with Munster was 17-6 in Cork in January 2013.

The teams:

Munster: 15 Andrew Conway, 14 Shane Monahan, 13 Francis Saili, 12 Rory Scannell, 11 Gerhard van den Heever, 10 Ian Keatley, 9 Duncan Williams, 8 CJ Stander (c), 7 Jack O'Donoghue, 6 Dave O'Callaghan, 5 Dave Foley, 4 Mark Chisholm, 3 BJ Botha, 2 Mike Sherry, 1 Dave Kilcoyne
Replacements: 16 Niall Scannell, 17 James Cronin, 18 John Ryan, 19 Robin Copeland, 20 Jordan Coghlan, 21 Tomás O'Leary, 22 Denis Hurley, 23 Dave Johnston

Blues: 15 Dan Fish, 14 Garyn Smith, 13 Tom Isaacs, 12 Gavin Evans, 11 Richard Smith, 10 Rhys Patchell, 9 Tavis Knoyle, 8 Manoa Vosawai, 7 Ellis Jenkins, 6 Josh Turnbull, 5 James Down, 4 Lou Reed, 3 Craig Mitchell, 2 Matthew Rees (c), 1 Sam Hobbs
Replacements: 16 Kristian Dacey, 17 Thomas Davies, 18 Dillon Lewis, 19 Macauley Cook, 20 Jevon Groves, 21 Lewis Jones, 22 Gareth Davies, 23 Harry Davies

Date: Saturday, October 17
Venue: Irish Independent Park, Cork
Kick-off: 13:30 local (12:30 GMT)
Referee: Ian Davies (WRU)
Assistant Referees: Sean Gallagher, Gary Glennon (both IRFU)
TMO: Simon McDowell (IRFU)

COMMENTS