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Fitzgerald returns for Leinster as Ulster name unchanged XV for Pro12 semi-final

Jack Conan returns to the Leinster bench after a long injury lay-off.

LUKE FITZGERALD HAS returned to the Leinster team for tomorrow’s Guinness Pro12 semi-final against Ulster at the RDS [KO 7.45pm, TG4/Sky Sports].

Fullback Rob Kearney misses out with an ankle injury, meaning captain Isa Nacewa shifts into the 15 shirt, Dave Kearney moves to the right wing and Fitzgerald comes in on the left.

Luke Fitzgerald and Fergus McFadden congratulate try scorer Luke McGrath Fitzgerald is back for Leinster. Source: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

Otherwise, the Leinster XV is unchanged but there is a return to the bench for Jack Conan after cruelly breaking bones in his feet twice this season. It hadn’t been expected that Conan would return in this campaign, but his ball-carrying ability in reserve is a boost.

The Old Belvedere man joins the likes of Sean Cronin, Zane Kirchner and Ian Madigan – set for his final game at the RDS before joining Bordeaux this summer – on the bench.

Meanwhile, Ulster are completely unchanged from their victory over the Ospreys on the final day of the Pro12 regular season. Indeed, Les Kiss is fielding the same side that beat Leinster 30-6 in Kingspan Stadium last month.

Chris Henry will win his 150th Ulster cap at openside flanker.

Leinster:

15. Isa Nacewa (captain)
14. Dave Kearney
13. Garry Ringrose
12. Ben Te’o
11. Luke Fitzgerald
10. Johnny Sexton
9. Eoin Reddan

1. Jack McGrath
2. Richardt Strauss
3. Mike Ross
4. Devin Toner
5. Mick Kearney
6. Rhys Ruddock
7. Jordi Murphy
8. Jamie Heaslip

Replacements:

16. Sean Cronin
17. Peter Dooley
18. Tadhg Furlong
19. Ross Molony
20. Jack Conan
21. Luke McGrath
22. Ian Madigan
23. Zane Kirchner

Ulster:

15. Jared Payne
14. Andrew Trimble
13. Luke Marshall
12. Stuart McCloskey
11. Craig Gilroy
10. Paddy Jackson
9. Ruan Pienaar

1. Callum Black
2. Rory Best (captain)
3. Ricky Lutton
4. Peter Browne
5. Franco van der Merwe
6. Iain Henderson
7. Chris Henry
8. Sean Reidy

Replacements:

16. Rob Herring
17. Kyle McCall
18. Andy Warwick
19. Robbie Diack
20. Roger Wilson
21. Paul Marshall
22. Stuart Olding
23. Darren Cave

Referee: Ian Davies [WRU].

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About the author:

Murray Kinsella

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