Positive scan clears Chris Farrell to start Munster’s crucial Champions Cup clash in Gloucester

MUNSTER HEAD COACH Johann van Graan has been able to retain explosive centre Chris Farrell for Munster’s crucial Heineken Champions Cup clash away to Gloucester tomorrow (kick-off 19.45, BT Sport).

The southern province reported a range of knocks in the wake of the thrilling win over Connacht in Galway last weekend, with a limping Farrell chief among them.

However, the southern province today say the Ireland international – who underwent surgery on his ACL early last year – was given positive news after undergoing a scan on the latest knee issue as they named him to start alongside Rory Scannell in a close-to-full-strength XV for Kingsholm.

Chris Cloete has not been able to force his way back from injury in time, Tommy O’Donnell instead takes up the openside slot alongside Peter O’Mahony and CJ Stander.

Conor Murray partners Joey Carbery at half-back while Mike Haley is recalled to form a back three with Keith Earls and Andrew Conway.

Rhys Marshall has returned from injury and heads up the replacements ahead of what will be his first appearance since the October win over Gloucester in Thomond Park.

Munster enter the round 5 clash four points ahead of bottom-placed Gloucester, knowing anything but a win will blow the pool wide open. Their hosts’ hopes have been handed a boost with the return to fitness of out-half Danny Cipriani.

Cipriani departs injured against Exeter. Source: Tommy Dickson/INPHO

The gifted playmaker was sent off during the first half of the loss in Thomond Park in round 2 and had looked unlikely to feature in this rematch after picking up a chest injury last month.

Ben Morgan captains the side from the back row with ex-Munster lock Gerbrandt Grobler starting after making an impact from the bench in Limerick.


15. Tom Hudson
14. Charlie Sharples
13. Billy Twelvetrees
12. Mark Atkinson
11. Ollie Thorley
10. Danny Cipriani
9. Callum Braley

1. Josh Hohneck
2. Henry Walker
3. Fraser Balmain
4. Ed Slater
5. Gerbrandt Grobler
6. Franco Mostert
7. Lewis Ludlow
8. Ben Morgan (Captain)


16. Franco Marais
17. Alex Seville
18. Ciaran Knight
19. Freddie Clarke
20. Gareth Evans
21. Ben Vellacott
22. Owen Williams
23. Henry Trinder


15. Mike Haley
14. Andrew Conway
13. Chris Farrell
12. Rory Scannell
11. Keith Earls
10. Joey Carbery
9. Conor Murray

1. Dave Kilcoyne
2. Niall Scannell
3. Stephen Archer
4. Jean Kleyn
5. Tadhg Beirne
6. Peter O’Mahony (Captain)
7. Tommy O’Donnell
8. CJ Stander


16. Rhys Marshall
17. Jeremy Loughman
18. John Ryan
19. Billy Holland
20. Arno Botha
21. Alby Mathewson
22. Tyler Bleyendaal
23. Dan Goggin

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