Sean Jansen set for Connacht debut in Pretoria

24 November 2023

Sean Jansen set for Connacht debut in Pretoria

Sean Jansen is set to make his Connacht debut as Pete Wilkins makes six changes to the side which beat the Sharks last weekend for this Saturday's game against the Vodacom Bulls in Pretoria (k/o 3pm Irish time).

Jack Carty comes in at out-half where he will captain the side at Loftus Versfeld.

The front three remains the same with Denis Buckley, Tadgh McElroy and Finlay Bealham. There's a change in the second row with Darragh Murray joining Joe Joyce.

It's a brand new back row with Oisin Dowling moving from lock to blindside, Shamus Hurley-Langton starts at openside and Sean Jansen is set to make his debut wearing the number eight.

There are three changes in the backs including the return of Jack Carty, while playing alongside him at scrum half is Colm Reilly. Diarmuid Kilgallen joins Byron Ralston and Tiernan O'Halloran in the back three while David Hawkshaw will partner Cathal Forde at 12.

Commenting ahead of the game, head coach Pete Wilkins says:

“To play the Bulls at Loftus Versfeld is one of the great experiences in world rugby, and although it shapes to be a big challenge our entire squad is excited and ready to go.

I am pleased with the momentum we have built in this early part of the URC season. Our previous performance against the Sharks, whilst not perfect, was another significant step in the development of our team, demonstrating that we can find a way to win in tough and unfamiliar environments away from home.

The selection changes we have made reflect the importance of taking some fresh legs to Pretoria, whilst also building on some of the combinations that have served us well in recent weeks. Both Sean Jansen and David Hawkshaw deserve their first opportunities in the starting lineup and will no doubt make significant contributions to what will need to be a relentless and physical twenty-three man performance.”

15:00 Irish time, Saturday 25th November 2023 @ Loftus Versfeld

15. Tiernan O’Halloran (225)
14. Byron Ralston (20)
13. David Hawkshaw (17)
12. Cathal Forde (17)
11. Diarmuid Kilgallen (19)
10. Jack Carty (198) (C)
9. Colm Reilly (22)
1. Denis Buckley (232)
2. Tadgh McElroy (5)
3. Finlay Bealham (190)
4. Darragh Murray (12)
5. Joe Joyce (5)
6. Oisin Dowling (48)
7. Shamus Hurley-Langton (23)
8. Sean Jansen*

16. Dylan Tierney-Martin (28)
17. Peter Dooley (22)
18. Sam Illo (12)
19. Niall Murray (60)
20. Sean O'Brien (2)
21. Caolin Blade (175)
22. JJ Hanrahan (4)
23. Conor Oliver (66)