Connacht have been boosted by the return of internationals Finlay Bealham and Mack Hansen for tomorrow’s vital BKT URC meeting with the Cell C Sharks at The Sportsground (k/o 5.15pm).
 
The duo along with Josh Murphy have all recovered from illness, in what are 3 of 9 changes from the side that faced Leinster.
 
Bealham joins an all-new front row of Denis Buckley and Shane Delahunt, while Oisín Dowling comes into the second row alongside the retained Darragh Murray. The back row sees Murphy come in at blindside flanker with Conor Oliver on the opposite flank and Shamus Hurley-Langton at number 8.
 
Kieran Marmion comes back in at scrum-half beside captain Jack Carty, while there’s a start for Cathal Forde at inside centre with Tom Farrell for company. The back three includes Hansen and John Porch on the wings with Tiernan O’Halloran at full-back.
 
Commenting on the team selection, Director of Rugby Andy Friend says:
 
“It doesn’t need repeating how important tomorrow’s fixture is. We’ve put ourselves in a position where every point is crucial in these last seven games, so 4 or 5 points tomorrow is a must.
 
We know what to expect from the Sharks. They bring the physicality that you come to expect from a South African side but they also like to throw the ball around, so it should be an exciting one for the fans.”

 
CONNACHT RUGBY MATCHDAY 23 VS CELL C SHARKS
Saturday 7th January, 17:15 @ The Sportsground

Number/Name/Caps
15. Tiernan O’Halloran (213)
14. John Porch (70)
13. Tom Farrell (88)
12. Cathal Forde (4)
11. Mack Hansen (21)
10. Jack Carty (188) (C)
9. Kieran Marmion (220)
1. Denis Buckley (220)
2. Shane Delahunt (122)
3. Finlay Bealham (182)
4. Oisín Dowling (36)
5. Darragh Murray (3)
6. Josh Murphy (8)
7. Conor Oliver (51)
8. Shamus Hurley-Langton (10)

Replacements
16. Dylan Tierney-Martin (12)
17. Jordan Duggan (31)
18. Dominic Robertson-McCoy (75)
19. Leva Fifita (19)
20. Cian Prendergast (37)
21. Caolin Blade (159)
22. Conor Fitzgerald (60)
23. Byron Ralston (9)

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