The Connacht matchday 23 for tomorrow’s URC fixture against the Emirates Lions in Johannesburg has been named (k/o 3.05pm Irish time).
 
In all there are seven changes from last week’s side to face Leinster, with Andy Friend’s squad aiming to make it nine consecutive wins against South African opposition in the PRO14 and URC.
 
Two of chose changes are in the backs where Alex Wootton and Tom Daly come into the side. Daly starts at inside-centre with Bundee Aki moving to 13, while Alex Wootton forms an exciting back three on the wing alongside John Porch and Mack Hansen who moves to full-back.
 
Caolin Blade and captain Jack Carty are retained at 9 and 10 respectively.
 
In the front row there are starts for props Denis Buckley and Jack Aungier alongside hooker Dave Heffernan, while there’s a new-look second row of Oisín Dowling and Niall Murray. The final change sees the return of Paul Boyle at number 8, while Cian Prendergast and Jarrad Butler are named on the flanks.
 
Commenting on the team announcement, Head Coach Andy Friend says:
 
“We’ve had a really good week so far in South Africa, and while the disappointment of last week still lingers, there’s still a great sense of optimism in the group that we can finish these last few games on a high.
 
Tomorrow’s game brings additional challenges like the altitude, and the results so far have shown how difficult it is for European teams to get a win down here. The Lions have a strong scrum and pacey wingers so it’s up to us to not give them any footholds in the game, and take our chances when we get them.”
 
CONNACHT RUGBY MATCHDAY 23 VS EMIRATES LIOMS
Saturday 23rd April, 15:05 Irish time / 16:05 local time @ Emirates Airline Park
 
Number/Name/Caps
15. Mack Hansen (12)
14. John Porch (56)
13. Bundee Aki (117)
12. Tom Daly (58)
11. Alex Wootton (31)
10. Jack Carty (177)
9. Caolin Blade (148)
1. Denis Buckley (205)
2. Dave Heffernan (162)
3. Jack Aungier (29)
4. Oisín Dowling (23)
5. Niall Murray (32)
6. Cian Prendergast (28)
7. Jarrad Butler (93)
8. Paul Boyle (72)

Replacements
16. Dylan Tierney-Martin (3)
17. Jordan Duggan (26)
18. Greg McGrath (6)
19. Leva Fifita (13)
20. Conor Oliver (39)
21. Kieran Marmion (206)
22. Conor Fitzgerald (50)
23. Shayne Bolton (3)

Related

Composed Connacht Defeat Emirates Lions To Bag Win In South Africa.