Wholesale changes for Munster as they bid to rebound from Leinster loss

Mike Haley and Gavin Coombes are the only players who’ll start again in tomorrow’s clash with Benetton.

ben-healy Ben Healy starts at out-half for Munster against Benetton. Source: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

MUNSTER HEAD COACH Johann van Graan has selected a much-changed side for tomorrow’s rescheduled Guinness Pro14 fixture against Benetton at the Stadio Monigo [KO 5pm Irish time, eir Sport 1].

For the trip to Italy, Mike Haley and Gavin Coombes are the only players who retain their places in the starting line-up from last weekend’s loss to Leinster at Thomond Park.

In his 239th appearance for the province, Billy Holland will captain a side which includes Ben Healy and Nick McCarthy as its half-backs, with Roman Salanoa given the nod at tighthead prop for his first start in the Pro14.

There are two sets of brothers in the Munster team – Josh and Fineen Wycherley, along with Niall and Rory Scannell – while cousins Gavin and Liam Coombes will also start.

Prop Jeremy Loughman, who’s among the replacements, could play for the first time since October after recovering from a shoulder injury. 

Scrum-half Paddy Patterson, a short-term signing from Leinster, could make his Munster debut having also been named on the bench.


15. Mike Haley

14. Liam Coombes

13. Dan Goggin

12. Rory Scannell

11. Darren Sweetnam

10. Ben Healy

9. Nick McCarthy

1. Josh Wycherley

2. Niall Scannell

3. Roman Salanoa

4. Fineen Wycherley

5. Billy Holland (captain)

6 Jack O’Donoghue

7. Chris Cloete

8. Gavin Coombes


16. Kevin O’Byrne

17. Jeremy Loughman

18. Stephen Archer

19. Thomas Ahern

20. Tommy O’Donnell

21. Paddy Patterson

22. JJ Hanrahan

23. Damian de Allende


15. Jayden Hayward

14. Angelo Esposito

13. Joaquin Riera

12. Ignacio Brex

11. Tommaso Benvenuti

10. Tommaso Allan

9. Callum Braley

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1. Thomas Gallo

2. Tomas Baravalle

3. Marco Riccioni

4. Irné Herbst

5. Federico Ruzza

6. Marco Barbini (captain)

7. Manuel Zuliani

8. Toa Halafihi


16. Corniel Els

17. Nicola Quaglio

18. Tiziano Pasquali

19. Eli Snyman

20. Giovanni Pettinelli

21. Alberto Sgarbi

22. Luca Petrozzi

23. Leonardo Sarto

Referee: Andrea Piardi [FIR].

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Source: The42 Rugby Weekly/SoundCloud

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Paul Dollery

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