Connacht make wholesale changes for Edinburgh match

Pat Lam has made seven changes from the team that lost to Zebre

BY Daniel Kelly 13:55 Thursday 6 April 2017, 13:55 6 Apr 2017

Tiernan O'Halloran makes his 100th PRO12 appearance this weekend. Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Ryan Byrne

Connacht head coach Pat Lam has rung the changes for Friday's PRO12 match against Edinburgh.

There are seven changes to the team beaten in Zebre last weekend with Ireland internationals Tiernan O'Halloran and Kieran Marmion among the players to be drafted into the starting XV.

Set to make his 100th PRO12 appearance, O'Halloran has been among the top full-backs in the competition again this season with the most metres gained and more carries than any other player.

With five personnel changes in the backline, Marmion starts at scrum-half and Niyi Adeolokun, having shaken off a niggle, also returns on the right ring. Danie Poolman switches to the left flank while Steve Crosbie makes his second start for the province at out-half. After making his return from injury off the bench last week, Eoin Griffin is handed a starting place and will partner Bundee Aki in the centres.

There is one change to the front row as Dominic Robertson-McCoy replaces Finlay Bealham with Denis Buckley and Tom McCartney retaining their places.

Quinn Roux and Andrew Browne remain in situ in the second row with Eoin McKeon moving to blindside flanker as Jake Heenan has recovered from a minor shin injury to start at openside flanker. Captain John Muldoon continues at no.8.

Shane Delahunt, JP Cooney and Bealham provide the front row cover with James Cannon, Sean O'Brien, Caolin Blade, Jack Carty and Josh Rowland completing the replacements.

Ahead of the clash, head coach Pat Lam said: "This is our third away game in a row and after last week's game in Italy, we have an opportunity to produce a performance we can be proud of."

 

Connacht team and replacements to play Edinburgh:

(15-9): Tiernan O'Halloran, Niyi Adeolokun, Eoin Griffin, Bundee Aki, Danie Poolman, Steve Crosbie, Kieran Marmion.

(1-8): Denis Buckley, Tom McCartney, Dominic Robertson-McCoy, Quinn Roux, Andrew Browne, Eoin McKeon, Jake Heenan, John Muldoon (capt).

Replacements (16-23): Shane Delahunt, JP Cooney, Finlay Bealham, James Cannon, Sean O'Brien, Caolin Blade, Jack Carty, Josh Rowland.

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