Johnny Sexton makes seasonal bow as Leo Cullen rings the changes for the Dragons – Ireland


Johnny Sexton will captain Leinster tomorrow evening against Bernard Jackman’s Dragons at the RDS.

Rob Kearney comes in at full back which means that Jordan Larmour moves to the right wing from last week, while Dave Kearney comes onto the left wing.

In the centre Robbie Henshaw and Garry Ringrose are partnered for the first time this season with Ringrose making his first appearance.

In the half backs Jamison Gibson-Park starts again with Sexton outside him.

Ed Byrne makes his first start of the new campaign from loosehead prop, as does Andrew Porter at tighthead. Seán Cronin is selected between them at hooker.

Scott Fardy is joined by James Ryan for his seasonal bow, while in the back row Max Deegan, Josh van der Flier and Jack Conan complete the pack.

It will be van der Flier’s first game since injuring his ACL in February during the Six Nations against France.

On the bench there is a possible debut for Meath man Hugh O’Sullivan at scrumhalf, while Caelan Doris is also in line for his first game at the RDS Arena having played away from home for both his caps to date. Peter Dooley will also win his 50th cap if introduced.

O’Sullivan is in his second year in the Leinster Academy and the former Belvedere College student will be hoping to come off the bench and become Leinster Rugby’s 1,270th player.

Leinster: (15-9) R Kearney, J Larmour, G Ringrose, R Henshaw, D Kearney, J Sexton, J Gibson-Park; (1-8) E Byrne, S Cronin, A Porter, S Fardy, J Ryan, M Deegan, J van der Flier, J Conan.

Replacements: (16-23) B Byrne, P Dooley, T Furlog, R Molony, C Dorris, H O’Sullivan, N Reid, J Tomane.

Your 23-man #LeinsterRugby squad to face @dragonsrugby at the RDS. 👇#JoinTheRoar: https://t.co/OEMUZdQt9L#LEIvDRA pic.twitter.com/0suUszjSxG


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