While the senior squad travel to France on Heineken Cup duty, the Connacht Eagles welcome Bedford Blues to the Sportsground for round three of the British & Irish Cup.

Pool 3 is shaping up to be the tightest of pools with just two points separating all four sides a third of the way through the fixtures.

Bedford’s narrow win over Llanelli in round 2 – their first victory of the season – puts them level on points with the Scarlets.

The improving Blues will go into the game in buoyant mood after becoming the first side to beat London Welsh in the Championship this season.  But the Eagles will take confidence from their 27 – 25 win over Rotherham Titans in the last round.

Head Coach Nigel Carolan has made a number of changes following his side’s last two outings against Rotherham Titans (27 – 25) and Ulster Ravens (10 – 35). His matchday squad for Saturday is made up of a mixture of Senior and Academy players.

Connacht Eagles v Bedford Blues: Kick-off is at the Sportsground is at 2:30pm on Saturday, December 7th

Free entry for all to the Sportsground.

Connacht Eagles’ lineup v Bedford Blues

15           Shane Layden
14           David Panter
13           Conor Finn
12           Brian Murphy
11           Steve Macauley
10          Jack Carty (captain)
9             Paul O’Donohoe

1              Finlay Bealham
2              James Rael
3              JP Cooney
4              Dave Nolan
5              Danny Qualter
6              Andrew Browne
7              James Connolly
8              Eoghan Masterson

Replacements (from):

16           Dave Heffernan
17           Peter Reilly
18           Ultane Dillane
19           Conor Kindregan
20           Sean O’Brien
21           Caolin Blade
22           Tadhg Leader


British & Irish Cup Fixtures

Round 1

Llanelli RFC 76 v 14 Connacht Eagles                        Sat 12th Oct 2012 KO 2pm
Parc y Scarlets

Round 2

Connacht Eagles 27 v 25 Rotherham Titans          Sat 19th Oct 2012 KO 2.30pm
The Sportsground

Round 3

Connacht Eagles v Bedford Blues                          Sat 7th Dec 2012 KO 2.30pm
The Sportsground

Round 4

Bedford Blues v Connacht Eagles                                 Sat 14th Dec 2012 KO 2pm
Goldington Road

Round 5

Rotherham Titans v Connacht Eagles                           Sat 11th Jan 2013 KO 2pm
Clifton Lane

Round 6

Connacht Eagles v Llanellii                                      Sat 18th Jan 2013 KO 2pm
The Sportsground



Bealham, Hansen and Aki named in Ireland squad to face Wales