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06th Apr 2023

Caelan Doris deployed at new position for first time in his professional career

Patrick McCarry

The Mayo native has yet to play in the position since his pro debut.

Leinster are starting Caelan Doris at openside for the first time since his April 2018 debut, with Josh van der Flier out injured.

Leinster head coach Leo Cullen named Doris at No.7 in his match-day squad for Friday evening’s Champions Cup quarter final against Leicester Tigers. The four-time champions take on Tigers at Aviva Stadium from 8pm on Friday, with tickets still on sale.

Cullen has opted to keep Scott Penny, a more natural openside, on the replacements bench. To date, Doris has made 65% of his pro appearances at No.8 with the rest coming at blindside. Elsewhere, Jimmy O’Brien has moved to the right wing to accommodate the return of Garry Ringrose to the starting XV.

On the latest House of Rugby [LISTEN from 4:20 below], Greg O’Shea, Lindsay Peat and Jason Hennessy spoke about Leinster’s latest Champions Cup win, over Ulster, and the upcoming clash with Leicester.

Caelan DorisCaelan Doris of Leinster after his side’s victory over Racing 92, at Stade Océane in Le Havre. (Photo by Harry Murphy/Sportsfile)

Caelan Doris in rejigged back row

Both Caelan Doris and Garry Ringrose missed the 30-15 win over Ulster but are both cleared to play against Leicester Tigers. Ringrose and Robbie Henshaw form the centre partnership for the first time since October’s win over Munster.

Andrew Porter, Dan Sheehan and Tadhg Furlong make up the front row for the second week running. In the absence of Johnny Sexton, James Ryan captains the team and is partnered in the second row by Ross Molony.

Caelan Doris comes into the back-row and is joined by Ryan Baird and Jack Conan, with Baird set to win his 50th Leinster cap. On the bench, there are no changes from last Saturday’s win over Ulster, with Cian Healy set to become Leinster’s joint-second highest capped player.


15. Hugo Keenan (52)
14. Jimmy O’Brien (67)
13. Garry Ringrose (113)
12. Robbie Henshaw (74)
11. James Lowe (70)
10. Ross Byrne (144)
9. Jamison Gibson-Park (122)

1. Andrew Porter (104)
2. Dan Sheehan (42)
3. Tadhg Furlong (130)
4. Ross Molony (159)
5. James Ryan (70) CAPTAIN
6. Ryan Baird (49)
7. Caelan Doris (64)
8. Jack Conan (128)


16. John McKee (16)
17. Cian Healy (260)
18. Michael Ala’alatoa (43)
19. Jason Jenkins (13)
20. Scott Penny (54)
21. Luke McGrath (191)
22. Harry Byrne (47)
23. Ciarán Frawley (63)

Caelan DorisAndrew Porter, left, and Caelan Doris of Leinster after the Heineken Champions Cup Semi-Final match against Toulouse, in 2022. (Photo by Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile)

Leicester Tigers have named a starting XV that includes Mike Brown at fullback and England star Freddie Steward on the left wing. Handré Pollard starts in the 10 jersey with former Munster loosehead James Cronin also in the the off.

LEICESTER TIGERS: 15. Mike Brown; 14. Anthony Watson, 13. Harry Potter, 12. Dan Kelly, 11. Freddie Steward; 10. Handré Pollard, 9. Jack van Poortvliet; 1. James Cronin, 2. Julian Montoya (c), 3. Joe Heyes; 4. George Martin, 5. Cameron Henderson; 6. Hanro Liebenberg, 7. Tommy Reffell, 8. Jasper Wiese.

Replacements: 16. Charlie Clare, 17. Tom West, 18. Dan Cole, 19. Eli Snyman, 20. Olly Cracknell, 21. Sam Wolstenholme, 22. Charlie Atkinson, 23. Jimmy Gopperth,


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