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Phil Egan
Phil Egan

02:00 22 Nov 2019


Leinster head coach Leo Cullen has made five changes for Saturday's Heineken Champions Cup clash away to Lyon.

The four-time European champions started their pool one campaign with a bonus point win over Benetton at the RDS last weekend.

Rob Kearney makes his first start for Leinster since returning from the Rugby World Cup, with Jordan Larmour moving to the right-wing, while James Lowe keeps his place on the left-wing.

Robbie Henshaw and Garry Ringrose start in the centre for the first time this season, with Luke McGrath and captain Johnny Sexton continuing as the half-back pairing.

In the pack, Tadhg Furlong starts at tighthead after recovering from a back injury and he'll be joined in the front row by Cian Healy and Rónan Kelleher.

James Ryan starts in the second row and will be joined by Scott Fardy, who is set to earn his 50th cap

Rhys Ruddock and Josh van der Flier are both named in the back row once again, with Max Deegan making his first European start from number eight.

Amongst the replacements James Tracy is in line to win his 100th cap should he be introduced and Josh Murphy is in line to make his European debut off the bench.

Looking ahead to the game Cullen is expecting a tough test:

"They’ve a deep squad with tons of experience all throughout. They’ve got that mix of power and ball-playing ability as well. Wisniewski has been in TOP 14 a long time, (Baptiste) Couilloud is one of those really good young players.

"They’ve added well to their forwards this year as well, brought in a bit of power there. The scrum was probably something that was creaking a little bit. They brought in (Xavier) Chiocci who was from Toulon again a lot of top-end experience that he has."

Leinster team:

15. Rob Kearney
14. Jordan Larmour
13. Garry Ringrose
12. Robbie Henshaw
11. James Lowe
10. Johnny Sexton CAPTAIN
9. Luke McGrath

1. Cian Healy
2. Rónan Kelleher
3. Tadhg Furlong
4. Scott Fardy
5. James Ryan
6. Rhys Ruddock
7. Josh van der Flier
8. Max Deegan

Replacements:

16. James Tracy
17. Ed Byrne
18. Andrew Porter
19. Devin Toner
20. Josh Murphy
21. Jamison Gibson-Park
22. Ross Byrne
23. Dave Kearney

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