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Major blow for Munster with O'Mahony and Murray ruled out of Pro12 final

The influential Ireland internationals are both missing through injury.

CONOR MURRAY AND captain Peter O’Mahony have failed to recover from injury in time to feature in Munster’s Guinness Pro12 final against Glasgow Warriors at Kingspan Stadium tomorrow evening [KO 18.30].

Conor Murray injured Murray and O'Mahony are out of the Pro12 final. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

The Ireland international scrum-half picked up a knee injury during last weekend’s semi-final win over the Ospreys at Thomond Park, being replaced by Duncan Williams in the first half.

Munster say Murray met with a specialist yesterday and is required to rehab a medial ligament injury for the next six weeks.

Skipper O’Mahony, meanwhile, has been struggling with a hip flexor issue in recent times and was also withdrawn against the Ospreys, exiting early in the second half. The flanker failed a late fitness test today.

Cork man Williams takes Murray’s place in the nine shirt for tomorrow’s final, with UL Bohs’ halfback Cathal Sheridan being included on the bench having proven his fitness after a troublesome arm injury in recent times.

Billy Holland comes into the starting XV in O’Mahony’s place, with Donnacha Ryan moving to the blindside of the back row and Paddy Butler continuing in the seven shirt.

Sean Dougall has been included on the bench and Denis Hurley takes over the captaincy from O’Mahony.

More positively, Simon Zebo has recovered from the heavy blow to the head he took last weekend against the Ospreys and starts on the left wing. BJ Botha is preferred to Stephen Archer at tighthead prop, while James Cronin makes a return to the Munster bench.

Niko Matawalu with Darren Cave, Jared Payne and Louis Ludik Glasgow have dropped Niko Matawalu onto the bench. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Meanwhile, Glasgow coach Gregor Townsend has made a number of changes to the side that beat Ulster in the semi-finals, with try-scoring replacement DTH Van der Merwe promoted to the starting XV at the expense of Niko Matawalu.

Dougie Hall comes in at hooker, while Gordon Reid replaces the injured Ryan Grant at loosehead prop. Fijian lock Leone Nakarawa comes into the team in place of captain Al Kellock, who drops to the bench.

In the back row, Josh Strauss moves to number eight and takes over the captaincy, while Ryan Wilson and Josh Harley are included at the expense of Adam Ashe and Chris Fusaro.

Munster

15. Felix Jones
14. Keith Earls
13. Andrew Smith
12. Denis Hurley (captain)
11. Simon Zebo
10. Ian Keatley
9. Duncan Williams

1. Dave Kilcoyne
2. Eusebio Guinazu
3. BJ Botha
4. Billy Holland
5. Paul O’Connell
6. Donnacha Ryan
7. Paddy Butler
8. CJ Stander

Replacements:

16. Duncan Casey
17. James Cronin
18. Stephen Archer
19. Sean Dougall
20. Jack O’Donoghue
21. Cathal Sheridan
22. JJ Hanrahan
23. Ronan O’Mahony

Glasgow Warriors

15. Stuart Hogg
14. Tommy Seymour
13. Richie Vernon
12. Peter Horne
11. DTH van der Merwe
10. Finn Russell
9. Henry Pyrgos

1. Gordon Reid
2. Dougie Hall
3. Rossouw de Klerk
4. Leone Nakarawa
5. Jonny Gray
6. Rob Harley
7. Ryan Wilson
8. Josh Strauss (captain)

Replacements:

16. Fraser Brown
17. Jerry Yanuyanutawa
18. Jon Welsh
19. Al Kellock
20. Chris Fusaro
21. Niko Matawalu
22. Duncan Weir
23. Sean Lamont

Referee: Nigel Owen [WRU].

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