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Masterson moves to second row as Connacht's lock stocks run very low

Andy Friend has reshuffled his team for tomorrow’s visit to Edinburgh in the Pro14.

EOGHAN MASTERSON HAS been named in Connacht’s second row for tomorrow’s Guinness Pro14 clash with Edinburgh at Murrayfield [KO 7.35pm, eir Sport].

27-year-old Masterson is usually a back row but has moved into the locking department with Connacht currently in something of a crisis in that area.

Ultan Dillane is on the Ireland bench against Italy today, Quinn Roux is with the wider Ireland squad and has an injury, Cillian Gallagher and Niall Murray have recently undergone surgery, while summer signing Oisín Dowling is still on the comeback trail from a back injury.

eoghan-masterson Masterson moves into Connacht's second row. Source: Richard Huggard/INPHO

While Connacht have been hoping for dispensation from the IRFU to make a signing in the second row, Masterson will start alongside Gavin Thornbury – the last senior lock standing – in a reshuffled Connacht team for tomorrow’s clash with Edinburgh.

Sammy Arnold, usually a centre, starts on the right wing for Andy Friend’s side, while hooker Shane Delahunt and number eight Abraham Papali’i are back from suspension.

Meanwhile, scrum-half Colm Reilly and academy lock/back row Cian Prendergast are set for their Connacht debuts off the bench.

Prendergast played for the Ireland U20s earlier this year, while Reilly was part of the U20s’ Grand Slam last year.

Connacht (v Edinburgh):

15. John Porch
14. Sammy Arnold
13. Tom Farrell
12. Tom Daly
11. Alex Wootton
10. Conor Fitzgerald
9. Caolin Blade

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1. Denis Buckley
2. Shane Delahunt
3. Jack Aungier
4. Eoghan Masterson
5. Gavin Thornbury
6. Paul Boyle
7. Jarrad Butler (captain)
8. Abraham Papali’i

Replacements:

16. Jonny Murphy
17. Paddy McAllister
18. Dominic Robertson-McCoy
19. Cian Prendergast
20. Conor Oliver
21. Colm Reilly
22. Peter Robb
23. Tiernan O’Halloran

Edinburgh:

15. Jack Blain
14. Ernoi Sau
13. James Johnstone
12. Chris Dean
11. Jamie Farndale
10. Jaco van der Walt
9. Nic Groom (captain)

1. Pierre Schoeman
2. Mike Willemse
3. WP Nel
4. Lewis Carmichael
5. Andrew Davidson
6. Magnus Bradbury
7. Ally Miller
8. Mesulame Kunavula

Replacements: 

16. David Cherry
17. Jamie Bhatti
18. Murray McCallum
19. Jamie Hodgson
20. Connor Boyle
21. Henry Pyrgos
22. Nathan Chamberlain
23. George Turner

Referee: Adam Jones [WRU]. 

About the author:

Murray Kinsella

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