Leinster name team for Cardiff clash

by Kieran O'Daly , 06 April 2012

Leinster have named their team to face the Cardiff Blues in Saturday's Heineken Cup Quarter Final at the Aviva Stadium (KO: 5.45pm).


Leo Cullen returns to captain the side which features a number of changes from the one that beat Munster in the RaboDirect PRO12 at Thomond Park last weekend.

He partners New Zealander Brad Thorn in the second row, while Sean O'Brien also returns to the back-row to make his 25th Heineken Cup appearance for the province where he will pack down alongside Kevin McLaughlin and number eight Jamie Heaslip.

The backline remains unchanged, with Eoin Reddan partnering out-half Jonathan Sexton who will be looking to add to the 300 points he has amassed in 27 European appearances to date.

Gordon D'Arcy will partner the fit again Brian O'Driscoll for the 68th time in Leinster colours, with the back three completed by Luke Fitzgerald, Rob Kearney and Isa Nacewa.

Leinster coach Joe Schmidt also has plenty of firepower on the bench, with South African loose-head prop Heinke van der Merwe named alongside five Ireland internationals including Sean Cronin, Shane Jennings, Isaac Boss and Fergus McFadden.

LEINSTER:

Kearney, Nacewa, O'Driscoll, D'Arcy, Fitzgerald, Sexton, Reddan, Healy, Strauss, Ross, Cullen, Thorn, McLaughlin, O'Brien, Heaslip
REPLACEMENTS:
Cronin, van der Merwe, White, Toner, Jennings, Boss, Madigan, McFadden.

CARDIFF BLUES:

Halfpenny, Cuthbert, Laulala, Hewitt, James, Parks, L Williams, Jenkins, Breeze, Andrews, Davies, Down, Paterson, M Williams, Rush.

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