Heineken Cup match preview: Harlequins v Munster
Last Updated: 07/04/13 1:28pm
Harlequins have made four changes ahead of their Heineken Cup quarter-final against Munster at The Stoop on Sunday.
Tom Williams and Ugo Monye return to the Harlequins starting XV while Mike Brown continues at full-back.
In the forward line five remain unchanged while Maurie Fa'asavalu and captain Chris Robshaw make comebacks in the pack.
Tom Guest makes the bench after recovering from illness in time while George Lowe lines up alongside Tom Casson in the centre to make his 100th club appearance.
Munster are boosted by the retun of Simon Zebo who has been out of action since injuring his foot in the second round of Six Nations matches.
New Zealand back Doug Howlett sustained a shoulder injury in scoring a try during Munster's clash with Glasgow last weekend forcing him out of the side.
Munster coach Rob Penney is however able to name Conor Murray, Peter O'Mahony and Donnacha Ryan for the trip to face Harlequins.
Ryan has been out of action since for the last month suffering shoulder and back injuries but is preferred to Donncha O'Callaghan for the last-eight clash.
With Howlett unavailable Paul O'Connell will lead two-time champions Munster out at The Stoop as Harlequins return to the Heineken Cup quarter-final four years on from the infamous 'Bloodgate' scandal.
Harlequins enter the tie on the back of three successive league defeats while Munster carry momentum following their emphatic 51-24 victory over Glasgow last time out.
Harlequins: 15 Mike Brown, 14 Tom Williams, 13 George Lowe, 12 Tom Casson, 11 Ugo Monye, 10 Nick Evans, 9 Danny Care, 8 Nick Easter, 7 Chris Robshaw (capt), 6 Maurie Fa'asavalu, 5 George Robson, 4 Olly Kohn, 3 James Johnston, 2 Rob Buchanan, 1 Joe Marler.
Replacements: 16 Joe Gray, 17 Mark Lambert, 18 Will Collier, 19 Charlie Matthews, 20 Tom Guest, 21 Karl Dickson, 22 Ben Botica 23 Matt Hopper.
Munster: 15 Felix Jones, 14 Denis Hurley, 13 Casey Laulala, 12 James Downey, 11 Simon Zebo, 10 Ronan O'Gara, 9 Conor Murray, 8 James Coughlan, 7 Tommy O'Donnell, 6 Peter O'Mahony, 5 Paul O'Connell (capt), 4 Donnacha Ryan, 3 BJ Botha, 2 Mike Sherry, 1 David Kilcoyne.
Replacements: 16 Damien Varley, 17 Wian du Preez, 18 Stephen Archer, 19 Donncha O'Callaghan, 20 Paddy Butler, 21 Cathal Sheridan, 22 Ian Keatley, 23 Ivan Dineen.
What they said...
Harlequins coach Conor O'Shea
"The challenge is what is in front of you, you look at the players they will have and I know they can play with passion and what the Heineken Cup means to Munster people.
"This will be the greatest atmosphere The Stoop has ever witnessed and it is up to the players to give them energy in the way we play."
Munster fly-half Ronan O'Gara
"We have been written off in many quarters before but that's for people outside of the team to concentrate on, as a team we are focussed on what we need to do and there has been great excitement in training.
"It is the best competition in the world, it's a competition I love, I've got huge reward out of it, I live for the Heineken Cup and we are two games away from being in the final."
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