Family affair as brothers and...

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Family affair as brothers and cousins populate Munster side for Benetton


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Munster head coach Johann van Graan has made wholesale changes for Saturday's Guinness PRO14 game away to Benetton. 

He's been deprived of a plethora of internationals due to Six Nations call-ups, while Jean Kleyn is suspended.

Only Mike Haley and Gavin Coombes are retained from the side narrowly beaten by Leinster last week at Thomond Park.

It's a team populated by family connections, with brothers Rory Scannell and Niall Scannell both starting. Another set of brothers - Josh and Fineen Wycherley - are named in the pack.

While winger Liam Coombes, and back-row forward Gavin Coombes are cousins.

Elsewhere, tighthead prop Roman Salanoa will make his first PRO14 start on Saturday.

JJ Hanrahan and Damien de Allended both drop to the bench, with Ben Healy and Rory Scannell replacing them.

Nick McCarthy forms a half-back partnership with Healy in the absence of both Conor Murray and Craig Casey.

Billy Holland will captain the side on what will be his 239th appearance for the province.

Jeremy Loughman is named among the replacements, having last played for Munster in October. He's spent the intervening period recovering from shoulder surgery.

Munster team v Benetton:
15. Mike Haley; 14. Liam Coombes, 13. Dan Goggin, 12. Rory Scannell, 11. Darren Sweetnam; 10. Ben Healy, 9. Nick McCarthy; 1. Josh Wycherley, 2. Niall Scannell, 3. Roman Salanoa; 4. Fineen Wycherley, 5. Billy Holland (C); 6. Jack O’Donoghue, 7. Chris Cloete, 8. Gavin Coombes.

Replacements: 16. Kevin O’Byrne, 17. Jeremy Loughman, 18. Stephen Archer, 19. Thomas Ahern, 20. Tommy O’Donnell, 21. Paddy Patterson, 22. JJ Hanrahan, 23. Damian de Allende.

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Guinness Pro14 Mike Haley Munster Pro 14 Roman Salanoa

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