Tommy O’Donnell starts for final Thomond Park appearance

Tipperary’s Tommy O’Donnell starts for Munster tomorrow for his final appearance at Thomond Park.

The Cahir native retires at the end of the season and will line out in the back-row for the game against Cardiff Blues in the Rainbow Cup.

In all, there are seven changes to the side with Mike Haley, Rory Scannell, Joey Carbery, Niall Scannell, Stephen Archer and Fineen Wycherley the other inclusions to come into the starting fifteen.

Speaking ahead of the game, Tommy says he felt the time was right to call an end to his career:

“I took all the factors into account and I think yeah, I just had given it socks and I wanted to call it on my own terms as well.

“I didn’t want to go that extra year too long and to not be performing to the best of my ability, it would of done myself an injustice but it would’ve also done the lads around me an injustice.

“They’ll be just as well able to give as good an account of themselves next year than I would’ve been at my stage of my career.”

The game will also act as CJ Stander and James Cronin’s last Munster appearances at Thomond Park.

Munster starting xv: Mike Haley; Andrew Conway, Damian de Allende, Rory Scannell, Shane Daly; Joey Carbery, Craig Casey; James Cronin, Niall Scannell, Stephen Archer; Jean Kleyn, Fineen Wycherley; Jack O’Donoghue, Tommy O’Donnell, CJ Stander (C).

Replacements: Diarmuid Barron , Jeremy Loughman, Keynan Knox, Gavin Coombes, Peter O’Mahony, Nick McCarthy, Jack Crowley, Jack O’Sullivan.