Planet Rugby

Preview: Wasps v Leinster

04th April 2013 16:01

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Wasps forward Joe Launchbury on a run

Blindside: Joe Launchbury

London Wasps have named lock Joe Launchbury on the blindside flank for their Amlin Challenge Cup quarter-final clash with Leinster on Friday.

Marco Wentzel captains the side from the second-row where he packs down alongside England international Tom Palmer with Launchbury at six.

Ashley Johnson starts at number eight this week while Nick Robinson moves into the fly-half shirt.

"There's been a great buzz around the club this week and everyone's looking forward to testing ourselves against one of the best sides in European rugby. Leinster have been incredibly consistent over the last few years and this is a big challenge for our developing side but one everyone is up for," said Wasps boss Dai Young.

Meanwhile, Dave Kearney will make his 50th Leinster appearance after being named in a backline which features Gordon D'Arcy who has recovered from illness to take his place in the XV.

D'Arcy is joined by international colleague Fergus McFadden, who has recovered from injury to take his place in the midfield, with Ian Madigan set to make his 75th appearance.

Rob Kearney starts at full-back with Isa Nacewa named on the left wing for the province.

Up front, Devin Toner partners skipper Leo Cullen at lock, with Kevin McLaughlin set to make his 90th appearance. Sean O'Brien and Jamie Heaslip complete the back-row.

Ireland duo Sean Cronin and Shane Jennings are named amongst the replacements.

The teams:

Wasps: 15 Elliott Daly, 14 Christian Wade, 13 Andrea Masi, 12 Chris Bell, 11 Tom Varndell, 10 Nicky Robinson, 9 Joe Simpson, 8 Ashley Johnson, 7 Sam Jones, 6 Joe Launchbury, 5 Marco Wentzel, 4 Tom Palmer, 3 Phil Swainston, 2 T Rhys Thomas, 1 Zak Taulafo.
Replacements: 16 Tom Lindsay, 17 Tim Payne, 18 William Taylor, 19 Jonathan Poff, 20 Billy Vunipola, 21 Charlie Davies, 22 Stephen Jones, 23 Hugo Southwell.

Leinster: 15 Rob Kearney, 14 Dave Kearney, 13 Fergus McFadden, 12 Gordon D'Arcy, 11 Isa Nacewa, 10 Ian Madigan, 9 Isaac Boss, 8 Jamie Heaslip, 7 Sean O'Brien, 6 Kevin McLaughlin, 5 Devin Toner, 4 Leo Cullen, 3 Mike Ross, 2 Richardt Strauss, 1 Cian Healy.
Replacements: 16 Sean Cronin, 17 Jack McGrath, 18 Jamie Hagan, 19 Quinn Roux, 20 Shane Jennings, 21 John Cooney, 22 Andrew Goodman, 23 Andrew Conway.

Date: Friday, April 5
Kick-off: 20:00 BST
Venue: Adams Park
Referee: Pascal Gauzère (France)
Assistant referees: Marius Mitrea (Italy), Neil Hennessy (Wales)

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