Lengthy-serving second row Devin Toner will develop into Leinster’s most-capped participant of all-time after they host Munster in Saturday’s Guinness PRO14 last.
Toner will run out on the RDS (kick-off 5pm) for his 262nd look for the province, beating Gordon D’Arcy’s earlier document which has stood since 2015.
Solely 4 gamers are retained from the staff that misplaced 24-19 to the Ospreys final weekend – Rory O’Loughlin and Dave Kearney within the back-line, and Toner and Scott Fardy, who reverts to the lock place.
Luke McGrath will captain Leinster for the primary time in a last, main a back-line that has Hugo Keenan, Jordan Larmour and Robbie Henshaw straight again in from Eire responsibility.
Returning at full-back, Keenan performed each minute of Eire’s Six Nations marketing campaign. Dave Kearney, who has scored 10 tries in all competitions for Leinster this season, completes the back-three.
O’Loughlin reverts to midfield the place he companions the in-form Henshaw, whereas Ross Byrne will get the nod at out-half with Eire captain Jonathan Sexton backing him up from the bench.
The defending champions’ beginning pack is made up of Toner, Fardy, Rhys Ruddock and 5 gamers who helped Eire to a memorable victory over England final Saturday.
Cian Healy, Ronan Kelleher and Andrew Porter mix collectively within the entrance row, and Josh van der Flier and Jack Conan are additionally again in blue at openside flanker and quantity 8 respectively.
Sexton spearheads a powerful set of replacements, together with Jamison Gibson-Park, who is ready to win his one centesimal Leinster cap, and James Lowe who’s poised to achieve the half-century mark.
Head coach Leo Cullen commented: “Such a superb fixture, isn’t it? For many completely different causes. It ought to be a fantastic problem, Munster are a staff that we all know properly.
“We all know that they know our guys very, very properly and I feel one of many gamers stated this week it’s unusual after we’ve spent the final eight weeks collectively as greatest associates and now they’ll come bashing out towards one another, after battling collectively for the previous two months.
“You’ll be able to see completely different glimpses of Munster and the way they’re evolving their sport as properly, the coaches, so it’s simply essential that we perceive all of the completely different threats.
“There’s all the standard threats – however there are some more moderen ones as properly. Joey (Carbery) is one other good Blackrock man and it’s good to see him come again in as properly from them. So large, large sport for him as properly.”
With regards to his record-breaking lock, the Leinster boss added: “Dev’s a fantastic character, very, highly regarded amongst the group. In some ways he’s your basic light big.
“I keep in mind first watching him play for the Irish schoolboys towards Wales in Donnybrook and he’s positively a standout particular person, you don’t neglect him whenever you see him.
“To see how he’s progressed from these early days and what he’s achieved within the sport is unbelievable actually. His sturdiness is what stands out when it comes to turning into the document caps holder, overtaking Darce, and what he’s achieved with Eire as properly.
“It’s been wonderful and it means an enormous quantity to Dev and his household, when it comes to hitting this milestone and all of the issues he’s accomplished in a Leinster jersey. Hopefully he’ll have a giant day tomorrow as a result of it’s an enormous sport.”
LEINSTER (v Munster): Hugo Keenan; Jordan Larmour, Rory O’Loughlin, Robbie Henshaw, Dave Kearney; Ross Byrne, Luke McGrath (capt); Cian Healy, Ronan Kelleher, Andrew Porter, Devin Toner, Scott Fardy, Rhys Ruddock, Josh van der Flier, Jack Conan.
Replacements: James Tracy, Ed Byrne, Tadhg Furlong, Ross Molony, Ryan Baird, Jamison Gibson-Park, Jonathan Sexton, James Lowe.