Leinster make wholesale changes ahead of Zebre encounter

Leo Cullen has made eight changes to the team that played Cardiff Blues

BY Newstalk 13:58 Friday 26 February 2016, 13:58 26 Feb 2016

Leinster captain Isa Nacewa Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Gary Carr

Leinster Head Coach Leo Cullen has made eight changes to the team for the trip to Italy to face Zebre, with five of those changes coming in the pack.

Peter Dooley comes in at loose head prop to start his third game of the season, with James Tracy coming in at hooker and Tadhg Furlong continuing at tight head.

Ross Molony comes back into the second row to partner Clontarf's Mick Kearney who made his debut in the BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park.

There are two further changes in the back row with Dominic Ryan starting at blind side flanker to win his 99th cap in blue, while Dan Leavy starts at openside for his eighth game of the season. Last weekend's Man of the Match, Jack Conan, will once again pack down at number eight.

Zane Kirchner starts at full back once again with Adam Byrne on the left wing. Byrne scored his first Leinster try against Zebre two weeks ago in the RDS. Isa Nacewa, who scored Leinster's only try last weekend in the 13-14 away win over Cardiff, will captain the team from the right wing.

St Michael's past pupils Luke McGrath and Cathal Marsh come in to the half backs with Ben Te'o and Garry Ringrose once again selected in the centre.

Leinster team and replacements to face Zebre:

(15-9): Zane Kirchner, Adam Byrne, Garry Ringrose, Ben Te'o, Isa Nacewa (capt), Cathal Marsh, Luke McGrath.

(1-8): Peter Dooley, James Tracy, Tadhg Furlong, Ross Molony, Mick Kearney, Dominic Ryan, Dan Leavy, Jack Conan.

Replacements (16-23): Sean Cronin, Jeremy Loughman, Michael Bent, Hayden Triggs, Jordi Murphy, Nick McCarthy, Noel Reid, Cian Kelleher.

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