Joey Carbery will make his first out-half start of the season in tomorrow night’s BKT United Rugby Championship meeting with the Bulls at Thomond Park.
Head coach Graham Rowntree has made six changes to his side following last weekend’s 20-11 defeat to Connacht at the Sportsground, while there are also a number of positional changes across the starting team.
The province have been boosted by the return of their Emerging Ireland contingent, with seven of that crop included in the matchday 23.
Shane Daly and Calvin Nash both start on the wings, while Patrick Campbell moves to his more natural home at full-back.
Carbery, who started last week’s game in Galway in the 15 shirt, is restored to out-half, as Ben Healy drops out, with Craig Casey starting ahead of Conor Murray.
The centre pairing of Dan Goggin and Malakai Fekitoa continues for the fourth game in a row.
In the pack, Niall Scannell continues at hooker, with a change of props as Jeremy Loughman and Stephen Archer start.
Edwin Edogbo makes his first start for the province, having featured in each of the last three games off the bench, partnering Jean Kleyn at lock.
Tadhg Beirne drops back to blindside flanker at the expense of Jack O’Donoghue, joining Gavin Coombes and Peter O’Mahony in the back row, the latter being passed fit after a neck injury.
O’Donoghue, Tom Ahern, Dave Kilcoyne, Conor Murray and John Hodnett are among a strong bench, with Rowntree opting for a 6:2 split in his subs.
Munster: Patrick Campbell; Calvin Nash, Malakai Fekitoa, Dan Goggin, Shane Daly; Joey Carbery, Craig Casey; Jeremy Loughman, Niall Scannell, Stephen Archer; Jean Kleyn, Edwin Edogbo; Tadhg Beirne, Peter O’Mahony (capt), Gavin Coombes.
Replacements: Diarmuid Barron, Dave Kilcoyne, Roman Salanoa, Tom Ahern, Jack O’Donoghue, Conor Murray, Jack Crowley, John Hodnett.
Robert Baloucoune (above) and Dave McCann both go straight back into the Ulster side, following their Emerging Ireland return, ahead of their meeting with the Emirates Lions.
The pair are among six changes from last week’s win against the Ospreys.
Baloucoune drops into the starting side after linking up with the Ulster squad in Johannesburg this week, joining Michael Lowry and Rob Lyttle on the wings.
Luke Marshall – last week’s Player of the Match against the Ospreys – continues alongside Stuart McCloskey in the centre, while Billy Burns returns at out-half to partner John Cooney behind the scrum.
Rob Herring starts at hooker having returned from injury last week, with Gareth Milasinovich at tighthead, replacing Marty Moore.
The second row partnership of Alan O’Connor and Sam Carter is unchanged, while the McCann and Marcus Rea come in at flanker to partner Duane Vermeulen in the back row.
Ulster: Michael Lowry; Rob Baloucoune, Luke Marshall, Stuart McCloskey, Rob Lyttle; Billy Burns, John Cooney; Eric O’Sullivan, Rob Herring, Gareth Milasinovich; Alan O’Connor (capt), Sam Carter; Dave McCann, Marcus Rea, Duane Vermeulen.
Replacements: John Andrew, Callum Reid, Tom O’Toole, Cormac Izuchukwu, Nick Timoney, Nathan Doak, Stewart Moore, Ethan McIlroy.
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