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Johnny Sexton returns to captain Leinster against Toulon in Champions Cup

Leo Cullen makes four changes to his XV, with James Lowe, Tadhg Furlong and Ryan Baird also starting.

Johnny Sexton (file pic).
Johnny Sexton (file pic).
Image: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

JOHNNY SEXTON RETURNS to captain Leinster against Toulon in their last-16 Champions Cup clash at the RDS Arena tomorrow [KO 5.30pm, live on BT Sport].

Sexton is one of four changes to the XV following last weekend’s Pro14 final win over Munster, with James Lowe, Tadhg Furlong and Ryan Baird also starting.

Jamison Gibson-Park misses out, with the province saying he was injured in training yesterday, while Ross Byrne is fit enough to take his place on the bench. Dave Kearney, meanwhile, drops to the replacements despite his excellent form this season.

Hugo Keenan continues at full-back, with Jordan Larmour lining out on the right wing once again and Lowe coming in on the left for his 50th Leinster cap. The centre partnership remains the same with Robbie Henshaw and Rory O’Loughlin joining forces.

Fresh off captaining the side to glory last weekend, Luke McGrath is named at scrum-half, while Sexton regains the skipper role at 10.

Furlong comes is the only change to the front row, where he joins Cian Healy and Rónan Kelleher, while Ryan Baird earns his second start in Europe in the second row alongside Devin Toner.

And it’s as you were in the back row, with Rhys Ruddock at blindside, Josh van der Flier at openside and Player of the Match against Munster, Jack Conan, at 8.

Toulon, meanwhile, have named a strong pack for their visit to the RDS, though they’re without out-half Louis Carbonel.

Leinster Rugby (caps in brackets)

15. Hugo Keenan
14. Jordan Larmour
13. Rory O’Loughlin
12. Robbie Henshaw
11. James Lowe
10. Johnny Sexton
9. Luke McGrath

1. Cian Healy 
2. Rónan Kelleher
3. Tadhg Furlong
4. Devin Toner
5. Ryan Baird
6. Rhys Ruddock
7. Josh van der Flier
8. Jack Conan

Replacements

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16. James Tracy 
17. Ed Byrne
18. Andrew Porter
19. Ross Molony
20. Scott Fardy 
21. Hugh O’Sullivan
22. Ross Byrne
23. Dave Kearney

Referee: Matthew Carley (RFU).

Screenshot 2020-11-24 at 9.04.07 AM

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