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Furlong and Lowe start as Leinster name unchanged team for Champions Cup final

La Rochelle boss Ronan O’Gara has named influential second row Will Skelton in his starting XV.

Tadhg Furlong.
Tadhg Furlong.
Image: James Crombie/INPHO

LEINSTER PAIR TADHG Furlong and James Lowe have both been passed fit to start tomorrow’s Heineken Champions Cup final clash with La Rochelle [KO 4.45 Irish time, Virgin Media 2/BT Sport 2/Channel 4] in Marseille.

Furlong limped out of Leinster’s semi-final win over Toulouse on May 14 with an ankle injury, while Lowe picked up a knock to the shin in the closing stages of the same game. 

However with Furlong and Lowe both winning their fitness battles, Leinster head coach Leo Cullen has been able to name an unchanged starting XV from the quarter-final and semi-final wins over Leicester Tigers and Toulouse.

Hugo Keenan continues as full-back, with Jimmy O’Brien and Lowe starting on the wings.

Garry Ringrose and Robbie Henshaw continue their midfield partnership, while Jamison Gibson-Park joins captain Johnny Sexton in the half-backs.

Andrew Porter, Rónan Kelleher and Furlong start in the front row, with Ross Molony and James Ryan at second row.

Caelan Doris, Josh van der Flier and Jack Conan line out in the back row.

On the bench, Ciarán Frawley has recovered from a facial injury to take the 23 jersey, as Jordan Larmour misses out.

Meanwhile La Rochelle boss Ronan O’Gara has been able to name influential second row Will Skelton in his starting team.

Skelton has been suffering with a calf injury in recent weeks but came off the bench to play the final 13 minutes of a Top 14 win over Stade Francais last Saturday, and is deemed fit enough to start at the Stade Vélodrome.

However scrum-half Tawara Kerr-Barlow misses out due to a hand injury, as does Victor Vito, who has an ankle injury.  

LEINSTER

15. Hugo Keenan 

14. Jimmy O’Brien

13. Garry Ringrose 

12. Robbie Henshaw 

11. James Lowe 

10. Johnny Sexton (captain)

9. Jamison Gibson-Park

1. Andrew Porter 

2. Rónan Kelleher

3. Tadhg Furlong

4. Ross Molony 

5. James Ryan 

6. Caelan Doris 

7. Josh van der Flier 

8. Jack Conan 

Replacements:

16. Dan Sheehan

17. Cian Healy 

18. Michael Ala’alatoa 

19. Joe McCarthy 

20. Rhys Ruddock 

21. Luke McGrath 

22. Ross Byrne 

23. Ciarán Frawley 

La Rochelle

15. Brice Dulin

14. Dillyn Leyds

13. Jérémy Sinzelle

12. Jonathan Danty

11. Raymond Rhule

10. Ihaia West

9. Thomas Berjon

1. Dany Priso

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2. Pierre Bourgarit

3. Uini Atonio

4. Thomas Lavault

5. Will Skelton

6. Wiaan Liebenberg

7. Matthias Haddad

8. Grégory Alldritt (captain)

Replacements:

16. Facundo Bosch

17. Reda Wardi

18. Joel Sclavi

19. Romain Sazy

20. Remi Bourdeau

21. Arthur Retiere

22. Levani Botia

23. Jules Favre 

Referee - Wayne Barnes (RFU)

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About the author:

Ciarán Kennedy

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