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Robbie starts at outside center.

Connacht face a difficult assignment away in Wales.


Starting XV: 15 Darragh Leader, 14 Tiernan O’Halloran, 13 Robbie Henshaw, 12 Mata Fifita, 11 Fetu’u Vainikolo, 10 Dan Parks, 9 Kieran Marmion,

1 Brett Wilkinson, 2 Jason Harris-Wright, 3 Nathan White (c), 4 Michael Swift, 5 George Naoupu, 6 John Muldoon, 7 Willie Faloon, 8 Eoin McKeon.

Replacements: 16. Adrian Flavin, 17. Ronan Loughney, 18. Rodney Ah You, 19. Dave Gannon, 20. Johnny O'Connor, 21. David Moore, 22. Miah Nikora, 23. Danie Poolman


Starting XV: 15 Richard Fussell, 14 Hanno Dirksen, 13 Andrew Bishop, 12 Ashley Beck, 11 Eli Walker, 10 Dan Biggar, 9 Kahn Fotuali'i,

1 Ryan Bevington, 2 Richard Hibbard, 3 Aaron Jarvis, 4 Alun Wyn Jones (Capt), 5 Ian Evans, 6 Joe Bearman, 7 Justin Tipuric, 8 Jonathan Thomas

Replacements: 16 Matthew Dwyer, 17 Duncan Jones, 18 Joe Rees, 19 James King, 20 George Stowers, 21 Rhys Webb, 22 Matthew Morgan, 23 Tom Isaacs

 Venue: Liberty Stadium, Swansea

Date: Saturday, 27th October 2012

Kick-off: 14:30

TV Broadcasts: None

Radio: Not on GBFM... maybe BBC Wales?

Referee: George Clancy


 Connacht travel across to Swansea having paid a heavy toll for their herculean efforts against Harlequins last week. Mike McCarthy, Connacht most consistent player over the last 2 years, is replaced in the second row by our rampaging number 8 George Naoupu, who is in turn replaced by the young Connacht Academy player Eoin McKeown. McKeown has impressed recently with his appearances in the senior team, and will need to keep improving against a very effective and professional Osprey's backrow.

Another change in the forwards comes in the front row, where Jason Harris Wright starts ahead of Adrian Flavin. Denis Buckley is dropped out of the matchday squad, and we must assume that he is not fit for duty, or perhaps he is being rested. Loughney and Ah'You provide the rest of the first row cover on the bench, with Johnny O'Connor again starting on the bench as backrow cover.

The backline sees some major changes, with Darragh Leader, Irish under-age international, starting at fullback to break his Connacht senior duck, after coming on from the bench in last weeks heavy Eagles loss to Newcastle Falcons. Robbie Henshaw moves into his preferred position in the center of the field, outside of Mata Fifata in a new center combination. Tiernan and Fets remain in their customary positions, and the half-back pairing of Marmion and Parks is also retained. On the bench the big news is the long-awaited introduction of ex-Stormers center three-quarters Danie Poolman, fresh back from a bout of German man-handling. Connacht fans will be eager to hear if he gets a chance to have an impact on the match.

 Aside from injuries to Ryan Jones and Adam Jones, this Ospreys team is at pretty much full strength. Fussell is as always a dangerous runner in the back, and Connacht will have to be careful not to kick too much loose ball his way. Up front there is a considerable heft in the Ospreys back line and they will look to pressurise the young Connacht scrum-half.

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