Rigney returns for Connacht
Colm Rigney comes back into the Connacht fold for tomorrow’s opening European Challenge Cup fixture against Brive at the Parc Municipal des Sports. Rigney, in line to win his 100th cap, replaces David Gannon in the only change to the 22 from last week’s 29-9 defeat to Leinster.
Michael Bradley’s back-line options are limited by the injuryenforced absence of Andy Dunne, Matt Mostyn and John Hearty.
Dunne is a week off recovery from a knee operation, Mostyn is expected to feature for Galwegians against Terenure after a year out with a broken ankle. Ireland A three-quarter Hearty must undergo a hip operation.
Their other opponents in Pool Three are the Newcastle Falcons and El Salvador, a Spanish club based in Valladolid.
Stephen Ferris is rated doubtful for Ulster’s match against Gloucester tomorrow night at Ravenhill after sustaining a knee injury against Glasgow last week. Roger Wilson is expected to take over at number eight with Neil Best at six.
The openside position is a straight shootout between Kieron Dawson and David Pollack.
Meanwhile, the defending AIB Cup champions, Garryowen, have drawn Ballymena at home in round three of the competition.
The fixtures are to be played on January 5th.
CONNACHT SQUAD (v Brive): M Deane, T Donnelly, G Duffy, P Durcan, A Farley, A Flavin, J Fogarty, K Matthews, M McCarthy, B McGovern, C McPhillips, R Morris, J Muldoon, J O’Connor, R Ofisa, C O’Loughlin, C Rigney, M Swift, O Treviranus, B Wilkinson, A Wynne, D Yapp.
AIB CUP – Round Three: Blackrock v Cork Constitution; Malone v Bruff; Clontarf v DLSP; UCC v Shannon; St Mary’s v Clonakilty; UCD v UL Bohemians; Garryowen v Ballymena; Galwegians v Old Belvedere.
AIB JUNIOR CUP – Round One: Armagh v Navan; Tullamore v Monivea; Seapoint v Kinsale; Sligo v Coleraine; Castlebar v Westport; Kanturk v Crosshaven; Boyne v Clonmel; Clogher Valley v Cooke. Scotland winger Sean Lamont has been ruled out of the rest of the season and must undergo knee surgery. The Northampton Saints player suffered a serious injury to his right knee in last Saturday’s match against Pertemps Bees.