Opsrey’s v Connacht preview & team news

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Updated: September 30, 2011

It’s second in the table versus third as unbeaten Osprey’s welcome Connacht to the Liberty Stadium on Friday night, kick off 7.30pm.

20 points from Dan Biggar helped the Welsh region to an 18 point win over Ulster last Sunday, and despite playing their second game in just 6 days, coach Sean Holley has made just one change to the starting line-up with Ian Evans coming into the second-row in place of James Goode.

Connacht have lost just on this season, on the road against Edinburgh and so far this campaign they have beaten Treviso, the Dragons and the Scarlets and remain unbeaten at home. Eric Elwood has decided to keep faith with the same backline that helped the province overcome the Dragons last weekend

Gavin Duffy will lead the side from full-back, with Eoin Griffin, who scored last weekend, and Henry Fa’afili in the centre while Brian Tuohy and Tiernan O’Halloran will man the wings.

Elwood has however decided to freshen up his front row with Dylan Rogers coming in for Rodney Ah You at tight-head while Michael Swift starts in the second-row. TJ Anderson makes his first competitive start for the Province at blindside. The 28-year-old former Ulsterman replaces Ray Ofisa who drops to the bench.

Connacht team:
15 Gavin Duffy (capt), 14 Brian Tuohy, 13 Eoin Griffin, 12 Henry Fa’afili, 11 Tiernan O’Halloran, 10 Niall O’Connor, 9 Frank Murphy; 1 Brett Wilkinson, 2 Ethienne Reynecke, 3 Dylan Rogers, 4 Michael Swift, 5 Mike McCarthy, 6 TJ Anderson, 7 Johnny O’Connor
8 John Muldoon

Replacements: 16 Adrian Flavin, 17 Ronan Loughney, 18 Stewart Maguire, 19 Dave Gannon, 20 Ray Ofisa, 21 Paul O’Donohoe,
22 Matthew Jarvis, 23 James Loxton

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