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Munster

  • Murphy, Varley,
    Penalty goals: Keatley (4),
    Conversions: Keatley (2),
26 - 10

Gloucester

  • Sharples,
    Penalty goals: Bentley,
    Conversions: Bentley,

Heineken Cup Pool 6: Munster v Gloucester match preview

Last updated: 19th October 2013  

Will James Gloucester

Will James: Will skipper Gloucester on his 150th competitive appearance for the club

Munster coach Rob Penney 2013

Munster head coach Rob Penney has made a number of changes to his starting XV

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Gloucester will look to back up victory at home last week as they visit Thomond Park to face Munster on Saturday.

While Gloucester travel to Ireland on the back of a morale-boosting win over Perpignan at Kingsholm, the boot was on the foot for Munster as they let a lead slip late to Edinburgh.

Defeat means there is even greater emphasis on this clash, with Munster knowing that another shock loss would leave them with a mountain to climb to avoid missing out on a quarter-final spot for just the second time in 17 seasons.

Munster have home advantage well and truly in their favour, though, with only Leicester and Ulster having triumphed at Thomond Park in the history of the Heineken Cup.

Gloucester not won away from home in the Heineken Cup since 2011, against Connacht. But the Cherry and Whites have won five of their last six Heineken Cup games against Irish clubs, losing only to Munster in the 2007/08 quarter-finals.

At home, Munster have won 13 of their last 14 matches in the Heineken Cup. This will be the sixth meeting between these clubs in the tournament. All four pool meetings to date have produced home victories.

Munster head coach Rob Penney has made a number of changes to his starting XV.

One change

The one change to the back-line sees Johne Murphy take the place of the injured Simon Zebo on the wing and in the pack Penney introduces Damien Varley, BJ Botha, Donncha O'Callaghan and captain Peter O'Mahony.

Murphy, who travelled as a backs reserve last weekend, comes straight in to the starting team as does O'Mahony, who was ruled out of the Edinburgh clash.

James Coughlan makes way for O'Mahony on Saturday and Donnacha Ryan shifts to blind-side replacing the injured Paddy Butler.

Donncha O'Callaghan resumes his second row partnership with Paul O'Connell as Varley and Botha join Kilcoyne in the front row. Cathal Sheridan takes the place of Duncan Williams in the replacements.

Meanwhile, Saturday will be a memorable occasion for Gloucester second row Will James, as he skippers the side on his 150th competitive appearance for the club.

The Welsh international captains a side which retains just three players from last weekend's starting line up - Jonny May, Ryan Mills and Mike Tindall, as Director of Rugby Nigel Davies lives up to his promise to rotate the squad.

Munster: 15 Felix Jones, 14 Keith Earls, 13 Casey Laulala, 12 James Downey, 11 Johne Murphy, 10 Ian Keatley, 9 Conor Murray, 8 Peter O'Mahony (capt), 7 Niall Ronan, 6 Donnacha Ryan, 5 Paul O'Connell, 4 Donncha O'Callaghan, 3 BJ Botha, 2 Damien Varley, 1 Dave Kilcoyne.

Replacements: 16 Mike Sherry, 17 James Cronin, 18 Stephen Archer, 19 James Coughlan, 20 CJ Stander, 21 Cathal Sheridan, 22 JJ Hanrahan, 23 Denis Hurley.

Gloucester: 15 Martyn Thomas, 14 Charlie Sharples, 13 Mike Tindall, 12 Ryan Mills, 11 Jonny May, 10 Jonny Bentley, 9 Dan Robson, 8 Ben Morgan, 7 Akapusi Qera, 6 Matt Cox, 5 Will James (capt), 4 Lua Lokotui, 3 Rupert Harden, 2 Darren Dawiduik, 1 Dan Murphy.

Replacements: 16 Daniel George, 17 James Gibbons, 18 Yann Thomas, 19 James Hudson, 20 Gareth Evans, 21 Tavis Knoyle, 22 Freddie Burns, 23 Rob Cook.

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European Rugby Champions Cup
Friday 17th October
European Rugby Champions Cup
19:45Harlequins vs Castres
Saturday 18th October
13:00Sale vs Munster
15:15Saracens vs Clermont Auvergne
19:45Leicester vs Ulster
15:15Glasgow vs Bath
17:15Racing Metro 92 vs Northampton
Sunday 19th October
17:15Leinster vs Wasps
15:15Toulon vs Scarlets
13:00Toulouse vs Montpellier
13:00Ospreys vs Benetton Treviso
Friday 24th October
19:45Munster vs Saracens
Saturday 25th October
13:00Ulster vs Toulon
19:45Scarlets vs Leicester
15:15Bath vs Toulouse
17:15Montpellier vs Glasgow
17:15Northampton vs Ospreys
Sunday 26th October
15:15Clermont Auvergne vs Sale
14:00Castres vs Leinster
17:15Wasps vs Harlequins
17:15Benetton Treviso vs Racing Metro 92
Saturday 6th December
TBCMunster vs Clermont Auvergne
TBCSale vs Saracens
TBCCastres vs Wasps
TBCHarlequins vs Leinster
TBCUlster vs Scarlets

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