Owen Farrell Munster handed big Champions Cup opportunity as Saracens opt to rest key men for Thomond test

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Owen Farrell Munster head coach Johann van Graan. Photo by Sam Barnes/Sportsfile
Munster head coach Johann van Graan. Photo by Sam Barnes/Sportsfile

Munster have been handed a significant boost ahead of their crucial Champions Cup clash with Saracens after the defending champions opted to rest a number of key players for the trip to Thomond Park.

Johann van Graan’s side are under significant pressure to secure a win on Saturday after drawing with Racing 92 in Limerick last month. Munster have named a strong side to take on the three-time European champions, but Mark McCall has decided to gives some of his England stars the weekend off.

Mako and Billy Vunipola, Jamie George, Owen Farrell , George Kruis and Elliot Daly will not be involved, although Maro Itoje does start at second row.

Munster have named Tadhg Beirne in the back row alongside Peter O’Mahony, who captains the side from number seven, and CJ Stander.

Billy Holland comes into the side at second row alongside Jean Kleyn.

The game kicks off at Thomond Park at 17.30.

Munster: Mike Haley; Andrew Conway, Chris Farrell, Rory Scannell, Keith Earls; JJ Hanrahan, Conor Murray; James Cronin, Niall Scannell, Stephen Archer; Jean Kleyn, Billy Holland; Tadhg Beirne, Peter O’Mahony (C), CJ Stander.

Replacements: Kev

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