Connacht Rugby Team

Connacht Rugby team to face Toulouse announced

Connacht Rugby Team

The Connacht Rugby team to face Toulouse at the Sportsground in round 1 of the 2016/17 European Champions Cup has been named. Pat Lam has made just one change from the side that registered a bonus point win over Ulster in the Guinness PRO12 seven days ago.

Picture Credit ©INPHO/James Crombie

Second row Quinn Roux returns for his third start this season while his Ireland teammate Ultan Dillane moves to the bench. Also among the replacements is Galway man Sean O’Brien who makes a welcome return from injury to be included in his first match day squad of the season. Kieran Marmion, try scorer in Connacht’s 2013/14 win over Toulouse, has recovered from injury to take his place among the replacement backs.

Commenting on the upcoming game, Pat Lam said:

“Tomorrow is a big occasion for Connacht Rugby with Champions Cup returning to the Sportsground. While we’re aware of the excitement surrounding the fixture, our focus has been on ensuring our week’s preparation has followed our normal routine of getting better every day. With Toulouse having a squad full of quality internationals, it’s vital we bring our team structures and systems to give us a chance of winning.

“It is important to start well in Europe and the fact that we are at home gives us a massive boost. Hopefully as many of our supporters as possible from Sligo, Leitrim, Roscommon, Mayo and Galway can get to the game to create that special Connacht atmosphere. I know it will mean a lot to the boys and it will play a big part in getting us over the line.”

The Connacht Rugby Team in full is:

Updated Saturday at 5pm
(Caps in Brackets)

15 Tiernan O’Halloran (106)
14 Niyi Adeolokun (37)
13 Bundee Aki (46)
12 Craig Ronaldson (52)
11 Cian Kelleher (4)
10 Jack Carty (59)
9 Caolin Blade (25)

1 Finlay Bealham (62)
2 Dave Heffernan (62)
3 Conor Carey (2)
4 Ultan Dillane (32)
5 Andrew Browne (145)
6 Eoin McKeon (90)
7 Jake Heenan (37)
8 John Muldoon (captain) (280)

16 Shane Delahunt (18)
17 Ronan Loughney (188)
18 JP Cooney (32)
19 Lewis Stephenson
20 Sean O’Brien (20)
21 Kieran Marmion (106)
22 Shane O’Leary (19)
23 Stacey Ili (1)

Kick off 5:35pm, Limited Tickets available, click here

On Sunday afternoon the Connacht Rugby Eagles side will kick start their British & Irish Cup campaign with a home game to Cornish Pirates at the Sportsground (Kick off 2:30pm).

New head coach Mossy Lawler has named a side that features a mixture of senior, Academy and club players from the province. Eoin Griffin and Rory Parata have both returned from injury to start in the back line with Galway man Griffin handed the captaincy for the opening game. Up front, lock James Cannon, who recently signed from Wasps, will get his first run out in a Connacht jersey, partnering Roscommon’s Danny Qualter in the second row.

Commenting on the upcoming game, Mossy Lawler said:

“We’re excited to give guys an opportunity tomorrow with a tough game against Cornish Pirates. As always with the Eagles, there is limited preparation time together as a unit and a real mix of experience but it’s a challenge we’re looking forward to. While we want to do well in the competition, the focus is on team performance and how individuals can execute in a pressure situation.”

The Connacht Rugby Eagles Squad in full is:

15 Danie Poolman
14 Rory Parata
13 Stacey Ili
12 Eoin Griffin (Captain)
11 Ed O’Keeffe
10 Mitch Lam
9 Stephen Kerins

1 Jason East
2 Jack Dinneen
3 Saba Meunargia
4 James Cannon
5 Danny Qualter
6 Marc Kelly
7 James Connolly
8 Stephen McVeigh

16 Pat O’Toole
17 Cronan Gleeson
18 Sean Masterson
19 Josh Pim
20 Conor McKeon
21 Luke Carty
22 Jordan Conroy

Entry is free for all Connacht Rugby Season Ticket Holders. Under 12’s are also free while it’s just €5 for all other entry available at the gate.