Preview: Treviso v Munster

Date published: February 26 2016

1022.6666666666666x767__origin__0x0_Munster_lock_Mark_Chisholm

Munster head coach Anthony Foley has made six changes from the side that lost narrowly to Glasgow as they travel to face Treviso on Sunday.

The first of three tweaks in the pack comes in the front-row with hooker Mike Sherry returning to pack down between Dave Kilcoyne and John Ryan.

Mark Chisholm is another returnee to the starting line-up with the Australian partnering captain Billy Holland in the second-row and, following his successful rehabilitation of a rib injury, Dave O'Callaghan comes in to join Jack O'Donoghue and Robin Copeland in the back-row.

Three changes are also seen across the backline. Duncan Williams resumes his starting partnership with Ian Keatley in the half-backs, as does Francis Saili alongside Rory Scannell in the midfield. The New Zealander has completed his return to play protocols for a concussion sustained against Ospreys in Round 14.

Wing Gerhard van den Heever is the final change to the starting XV with Darren Sweetnam and Andrew Conway remaining on the opposite wing and full-back respectively.

Irish internationals Tommy O'Donnell and Dave Foley have been made available to the province for this weekend's game and are included amongst the replacements.

Meanwhile, should he make an appearance from the bench, development prop Peter McCabe will make his first competitive appearance for the province.

James Cronin reported a tight hamstring this week and was unavailable for selection.

Meanwhile, Treviso have named a strong back three as Jayden Hayward, Ludovico Nitoglia and Angelo Esposito line up together.

Luca Morisi and Alberto Sgarbi will be the centres while the half-backs are Alberto Lucchese at scrum-half and Sam Christie at fly-half.

The front-row will consist of Alberto De Marchi, Luca Bigi and Simone Ferrari, who was man of the match in their last game.

Filo Paulo and Tom Palmer are the locks and behind them Marco Barbini, Marco Lazzaroni, and Robert Barbieri complete the XV.

Form: Benetton Treviso have won their last two matches, at home to Cardiff Blues and Newport Gwent Dragons, but have not won three in succession since October 2011. The Italians have not beaten an Irish opponent since their victory over Connacht at Stadio Monigo in the Guinness PRO12 in October 2013. Munster have lost their last two Guinness PRO12 fixtures, against Ospreys and Glasgow and have not lost three regular season games in succession since April 2013. Munster have won their last ten encounters with Italian opponents since their 19-29 reversal in Treviso in September 2013. The two sides have already met three times this season (two of those in the European Champions Cup) with Munster victorious on each occasion. The Munstermen have visited Stadio Monigo on eight previous occasions where their record is won five, lost three.

The teams:

Treviso: 15 Jayden Hayward, 14 Ludovico Nitoglia, 13 Luca Morisi, 12 Alberto Sgarbi (c), 11 Angelo Esposito, 10 Sam Christie, 9 Alberto Lucchese, 8 Robert Barbieri, 7 Marco Lazzaroni, 6 Marco Barbini, 5 Tom Palmer, 4 Filo Paulo, 3 Simone Ferrari, 2 Luca Bigi, 1 Alberto De Marchi
Replacements: 16 Federico Zani, 17 Cherif Traorè, 18 Filippo Filippetto, 19 Jeff Montauriol, 20 Dean Budd, 21 Andrea De Marchi, 22 Chris Smylie, 23 Tommaso Iannone

Munster: 15 Andrew Conway, 14 Darren Sweetnam, 13 Francis Saili, 12 Rory Scannell, 11 Gerhard van den Heever, 10 Ian Keatley, 9 Duncan Williams, 8 Robin Copeland, 7 Dave O'Callaghan, 6 Jack O'Donoghue, 5 Billy Holland (c), 4 Mark Chisholm, 3 John Ryan, 2 Mike Sherry, 1 Dave Kilcoyne
Replacements: 16 Niall Scannell, 17 Peter McCabe, 18 Mario Sagario, 19 Dave Foley, 20 Tommy O'Donnell, 21 Cathal Sheridan, 22 Cian Bohane, 23 David Johnston

Date: Sunday, February 28
Venue: Stadio Monigo
Kick-off: 15:00 local (14:00 GMT)
Referee: Ian Davies (Wales)
Assistant referees: Elia Rizzo (Italy), Simone Boaretto (Italy)
Television match official: Alan Falzone (Italy)

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