Team News: Tommy O’Donnell starts in exciting Munster team to play Cardiff

Retiring Munster star Tommy O’Donnell could make his final appearence for the province this Friday evening against Cardiff Blues (19:35 KO)

29 February 2020; Tommy O’Donnell of Munster is tackled by Steffan Hughes of Scarlets during the Guinness PRO14 Round 13 match between Munster and Scarlets at Thomond Park in Limerick. Photo by Diarmuid Greene/Sportsfile

33 year-old O’Donnell has found gametime hard to come by in recent seasons and the fixture is anticipated to be a form of send-off for the Cahir native. James Cronin, Billy Holland and CJ Stander are also leaving Munster at the end of the season but will be hoping to get their hands on the Rainbow Cup trophy in the coming weeks to finish on a high-note.

There are seven changes to the team that lost 24-20 to Connacht as Mike Haley, Rory Scannell, Joey Carbery, Niall Scannell, Stephen Archer, Fineen Wycherley and O’Donnell come into the fifteen.

Scannell and Archer are joined in the frontrow by another departing Munster veteran James Cronin. Jean Kleyn and Jean Kleyn make up the second row while there is an all international backrow of Jack O’Donoghue, Tommy O’Donnell and captain CJ Stander.

Craig Casey and Joey Carbery combine at halfback and Rory Scannell should benefit from their quick delivery at inside centre. Springbok Damian De Allende starts at thirteen while Shane Daly, Andrew Conway and Mike Haley look to make an impact from the back three.

Munster: Mike Haley; Andrew Conway, Damian de Allende, Rory Scannell, Shane Daly; Joey Carbery, Craig Casey; James Cronin, Niall Scannell, Stephen Archer; Jean Kleyn, Fineen Wycherley; Jack O’Donoghue, Tommy O’Donnell, CJ Stander (C).

Replacements: Diarmuid Barron , Jeremy Loughman, Keynan Knox, Gavin Coombes, Peter O’Mahony, Nick McCarthy, Jack Crowley, Jack O’Sullivan.

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