Lock Quinn Roux is set to captain Connacht in a preseason friendly against Russia in Moscow on Saturday (Kick Off 5pm Irish Time).
He is named in a strong Connacht side that includes a blend of youth and experience as Andy Friend’s side target their second win of the preseason period.
Roux will be joined in the second row by Gavin Thornbury with Ultan Dillane named among the replacements. In the front row the experienced Denis Buckley, who played in Connacht’s last trip to Russia in 2015, starts at loosehead. Alongside him will be hooker Jonny Murphy and Dominic Robertson McCoy at tighthead.
In the back row, Eoin McKeon and Paul Boyle are named at blindside and openside respectively with Robin Copeland at number 8. Eoghan Masterson and skipper Jarrad Butler will be among the options on the bench.
In the back line, David Horwitz and Angus Lloyd will be the starting half back partnership while Tom Farrell and Tom Daly are in midfield.
The back three will be made up of Darragh Leader at full back with Stephen Fitzgerald and new signing John Porch on the wings.
At the pre game press conference earlier today, Andy Friend spoke about the importance of the fixture to Connacht’s preparations for the upcoming season; “We are in our seventh week of preseason training so this game is coming at a really good time for us. We have brought a team that includes a number of young players, so this is an opportunity for them to perform on an international stage. As is the nature of preseason friendly games, all our squad will get a decent run out so its going to be very worthwhile for us.”
Commenting on the Quinn Roux’s captaincy of the Connacht side for tomorrow’s game, Friend added: “It is great to have Quinn involved. He is a fantastic player for us, and his international experience is a great addition for our team and the players around him”. Connacht Matchday Squad:
(15-9) Darragh Leader, John Porch, Tom Farrell, Tom Daly, Stephen Fitzgerald, David Horwitz, Angus Lloyd, (1-8) Denis Buckley, Jonny Murphy, Dominic Robertson-McCoy, Gavin Thornbury, Quinn Roux, Eoin McKeon, Paul Boyle, Robin Copeland.
Replacements (16-24): Tom McCartney, Matthew Burke, Conor Kenny, Ultan Dillane, Eoghan Masterson, Stephen Kerins, Conor Fitzgerald, Niyi Adeolokun, Jarrad Butler