Planet Rugby

Preview: Perpignan v Munster

11th December 2013 09:23

Share:

Sebastien Vahaamahina France lock training

Starting for Perpignan: Sebastien Vahamaahina

Perpignan have made a total of seven changes to the side that were well-beaten at by Munster for the return fixture at Stade Aime Giral on Saturday.

Giant second-row Sebastien Vahaamahina comes into the starting lineup behind a new front-row, with Luke Narraway captaining the team from number eight.

Fly-half Tommy Allan, who made his Italy debut in the November Tests, also starts alongside scrum-half Nicolas Durand, with Richard Haughton drafted into the starting XV on the right wing.

The French side were castled 36-8 by Munster in Round 3, but have lost only one of their past 23 Heineken Cup fixtures at their Catalan stronghold.

"We're at home and the boys love playing at home in front of a great crowd but we also have to show up and prove over 80 minutes what we showed for glimpses last weekend," full-back James Hook told the ERC website.

"We showed some good stuff at times but need to show it for longer periods."

Meanwhile, Donnacha Ryan is one of four players drafted into Rob Penney's side for tomorrow's crucial clash.

Ryan hasn't featured for Munster since injuring knee ligaments against Gloucester in October but makes his return ahead of schedule to partner Paul O'Connell in the second-row.

There's only one change in the backs as scrum-half Cathal Sheridan gets the nod ahead of Duncan Williams to replace the injured Conor Murray after impressing at the weekend.

Penney has continued his rotation policy with two changes in the front-row. James Cronin and South African BJ Botha replace Irish internationals Dave Kilcoyne and Stephen Archer. Damien Varley keeps his place in the side with Shannon hooker Duncan Casey hoping to make his second Munster appearance off the bench after his cameo last time out.

The back-row combination of captain Peter O'Mahony, Sean Dougall and James Coughlan remains intact.

Ian Keatley, as expected, has recovered from the dead leg he sustained last weekend to start at fly-half.

Outside of Keatley, James Downey and Casey Laulala retain their places in the centres with the back three of Johne Murphy, last week's man of the match Keith Earls and Felix Jones all keeping their places in the side.

The notable inclusion on the bench is last season's Player of the Year, Tommy O'Donnell. O'Donnell made his comeback from injury off the bench for Munster A last weekend after suffering a hyper-extension of his knee against Zebre in September.

The teams:

Perpignan: 15 Joffrey Michel, 14 Richard Haughton , 13 Lifeimi Mafi, 12 Watisoni Votu , 11 Sofiane Guitoune , 10 Tommy Allan, 9 Nicolas Durand, 8 Luke Narraway (c), 7 Al Strokosch, 6 Daniel Leo, 5 Guillaume Vilaceca , 4 Sebastien Vahaamahina, 3 Paulica Ion, 2 Land , 1 Sebastien Taofifénua
Replacements: 16 Guihelm Guirado , 17 Pascal Cotet , 18 Jean-Baptiste Custoja , 19 Justin Purll , 20 Tom Ecochard , 21 David Marty, 22 Tommaso Benvenuti , 23 Jean-Pierre Perez.

Munster: 15 Felix Jones, 14 Keith Earls, 13 Casey Laulala, 12 James Downey, 11 Johne Murphy, 10 Ian Keatley, 9 Cathal Sheridan, 8 James Coughlan, 7 Sean Dougall, 6 Peter O'Mahony (c), 5 Paul O'Connell, 4 Donncha Ryan, 3 BJ Botha, 2 Damian Varley, 1 Cronin
Replacements: 16 Duncan Casey, 17 Dave Kilcoyne, 18 Stephen Archer, 19 Donncha O'Callaghan, 20 Tommy O'Donnell, 21 Duncan Williams, 22 JJ Hanrahan, 23 Denis Hurley

Date: Saturday 14th December
Venue: Stade Aime Giral
Kick-off: 1640 local, 1540 GMT
Referee: JP Doyle (England)
Assistant referees: Martin Fox, Paul Dix (both England)
TMO: Rowan Kitt (England)

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Heineken Cup
Saturday , April 26
Saracens vs Clermont Auvergne15:40
More Heineken Cup fixtures
RaboDirect PRO12
Sunday , April 20
Newport Gwent D'gons vs OspreysNewport Gwent D
Saturday , April 26
Glasgow vs Edinburgh19:05
More RaboDirect PRO12 fixtures
Amlin Challenge Cup
Friday , April 25
Northampton vs Harlequins20:00
More Amlin Challenge Cup fixtures
Super Rugby
Friday , April 25
Blues vs Waratahs17:35
Brumbies vs Chiefs17:40
Sharks vs Highlanders19:10
Saturday , April 26
Hurricanes vs Reds19:35
Western Force vs Bulls17:40
Cheetahs vs Stormers17:05
More Super Rugby fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , April 20
Northampton 36 - 21 London IrishNorthampton vs London Irish Report
Newcastle 18 - 23 SaracensNewcastle vs Saracens Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Cardiff Blues 17 - 13 ScarletsCardiff Blues vs Scarlets Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , April 19
Bath 32 - 20 WorcesterBath vs Worcester Report
Exeter 12 - 55 SaleExeter vs Sale Report
Wasps 38 - 30 GloucesterWasps vs Gloucester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Zebre 26 - 13 EdinburghZebre vs Edinburgh Report
Connacht 23 - 32 MunsterConnacht vs Munster Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Top 14
Oyonnax 19 - 19 ToulouseOyonnax vs Toulouse Report
Stade Francais 37 - 23 Bordeaux-Begles
Biarritz 19 - 13 Brive
Racing Metro Paris 22 - 6 Clermont AuvergneRacing Metro Paris vs Clermont Auvergne Report
Perpignan 31 - 46 ToulonPerpignan vs Toulon Report
Grenoble 21 - 21 Bayonne
More Top 14 results
Super Rugby
Chiefs 17 - 18 CrusadersChiefs vs Crusaders Report
Waratahs 19 - 12 BullsWaratahs vs Bulls Report
Stormers 18 - 3 LionsStormers vs Lions Report
Sharks 19 - 8 CheetahsSharks vs Cheetahs Report
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , April 18
Harlequins 24 - 20 LeicesterHarlequins vs Leicester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Leinster 62 - 7 Benetton TrevisoLeinster vs Benetton Treviso Report
Glasgow 27 - 9 UlsterGlasgow vs Ulster Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Top 14
Castres 22 - 15 MontpellierCastres vs Montpellier Report
More Top 14 results
Super Rugby
Hurricanes 39 - 20 BluesHurricanes vs Blues Report
Melbourne Rebels 22 - 16 Western Force
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , April 13
Saracens 28 - 24 NorthamptonSaracens vs Northampton Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Saracens2080
2Northampton2071
3Bath2064
4Leicester Tigers2064
5Harlequins2058