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  • Penalty goals: Parks,
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    Penalty goals: Jackson, Hogg,
    Conversions: Jackson, Hogg,

Connacht v Glasgow - RaboDirect PRO 12 match preview

Last updated: 3rd May 2013  

Sean Lamont scores for Glasgow in Galway

Sean Lamont: Keeps his place in the starting XV

Johnny OConnor

Johnny O'Connor: Will retire from rugby after the game

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Connacht say goodbye to their number seven Johnny O'Connor when they take on Glasgow at the Galway Sportsground on Friday.

The 33-year-old flanker will turn out for the Irishmen for the 146th and last time before retiring from rugby after the game.

The Warriors have already qualified for the Play-Offs, but will probably need to win to give themselves any chance of gaining home advantage.

O'Connor represents the only personnel change to the forwards from the team who drew to Treviso last weekend. He is joined in the back-row by Andrew Browne and Eoin McKeon, who is at eight.

Eoin Griffin is named at outside centre for the last game of the season after his return from injury. This change sees the season's record try scorer, Danie Poolman, move on to the right wing.

On the bench, Adrian Flavin is named at replacement hooker and is in line to make his 142nd and final appearance for Connacht - his team for the last seven years as a win would help Connacht equal their best ever finish achieved last year.

Nine changes

Meanwhile, Glasgow could become the first Scottish side to secure a home play-off and Gregor Townsend has made nine personnel changes to the team that beat the Ospreys 35-17 at Scotstoun last month.

There are also two positional switches from the team that secured their play-off place against the defending champions, with only Sean Lamont, Pat MacArthur, Moray Low, Tim Swinson, Rob Harley and John Barclay remaining in the starting XV.

British and Irish Lions pair Stuart Hogg and Sean Maitland drop to the bench, along with Glasgow's player of the season Niko Matawalu, Ryan Grant and Josh Strauss. Alex Dunbar, Graeme Morrison, Duncan Weir and Al Kellock drop out of the squad altogether for the trip to Galway.

The Warriors are unbeaten in their last three contests with Connacht, whilst they have not been victorious at the Sportsground since April 2007.

Connacht: 15 Gavin Duffy (capt), 14 Danie Poolman, 13 Eoin Griffin, 12 Brian Murphy, 11 Fetu'u Vainikolo, 10 Dan Parks, 9 Kieran Marmion, 8 Eoin McKeon, 7 Johnny O'Connor, 6 Andrew Browne, 5 Mike McCarthy, 4 Michael Swift, 3 Ronan Loughney, 2 Ethienne Reynecke, 1 Brett Wilkinson.

Replacements (from): Adrian Flavin, Rodney Ah You, JP Cooney, Mick Kearney, John Muldoon, Mata Fifita, Paul O'Donohoe, Miah Nikora.

Glasgow: 15 Peter Murchie, 14 Tommy Seymour, 13 Sean Lamont, 12 Peter Horne, 11 DTH Van der Merwe, 10 Ruaridh Jackson, 9 Henry Pyrgos, 8 Ryan Wilson (c), 7 John Barclay, 6 Rob Harley, 5 Tom Ryder, 4 Tim Swinson, 3 Jon Welsh, 2 Pat MacArthur, 1 Moray Low.

Replacements: 16 Doug Hall, 17 Ryan Grant, 18 Ed Kalman, 19 James Eddie, 20 Josh Strauss, 21 Niko Matawalu, 22 Sean Maitland, 23 Stuart Hogg.

What they said...

Glasgow coach Gregor Townsend

"We were delighted with our performance against the Ospreys which secured our play-off spot, but we know we'll face a big challenge tomorrow night at a ground we've not won at since 2007. Connacht are enjoying a great run of form at the moment, having lost just twice in their last seven games, so it will be an extremely tough game for us, but one we're all looking forward to."

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