Connacht's Challenge Cup team includes Hansen and Aki for the Benetton game

Connacht's Challenge Cup team includes Hansen and Aki for the Benetton game

CONNACHT HAVE announced their team to play Benetton in the EPCR Challenge Cup on Saturday. They have made six changes to the side that beat Edinburgh last week.

Mack Hansen starts in a back three alongside John Porch and Tiernan O'Halloran, while Bundee Aki and Tom Farrell start in the centre.

Caolin Blade and David Hawkshaw start as a 9-10 combination.

Up front, Peter Dooley, Dave Heffernan, and Jack Aungier start, and in the engine room, Leva Fifita and Niall Murray provide second-row cover.

The side is completed by a backrow of Cian Prendergast, Conor Oliver, and Paul Boyle.

Director of Rugby Andy Friend said, "There was lots to like about last weekend's win, so it's a brilliant situation we find ourselves in where we can bring six experienced internationals into the team for this game.

"That experience will be very important in knock-out rugby, particularly away against a Benetton side who will also welcome back some important players.

"I'm very confident that we have the sufficient squad depth to challenge on both fronts in this final block of games. What's important now is to build on our recent performances as we attempt to progress through to the next stage of this competition."

The game kicks off at the Stadio Comunale di Monigo at 3pm

Fullback: 15. Tiernan O'Halloran
Winger: 14. John Porch
Centers:Β 13. Tom Farrell 12. Bundee Aki
Winger: 11. Mack Hansen
Out half: 10. David Hawkshaw Scrum half: 9. Caolin Blade
Front Row: 1. Peter Dooley 2. Dave Heffernan 3. Jack Aungier
Second Row4. Leva Fifita 5. Niall Murray
Back Row:6.Cian Prendergast 7. Conor Oliver 8. Paul Boyle
Replacements: 16. Dylan Tierney-Martin, 17. Jordan Duggan, 18. Sam Illo, 19. Oisin Dowling, 20. Shamus Hurley-Langton, 21. Kieran Marmion, 22. Cathal Forde , 23. Shane Jennings