Munster 16 - 13 Cardiff Blues
Fri 24 February 19:05 Thomond Park Att: 19,545 Ref: Leighton Hodges Pro12

Blues aim to record third win over Irish opponents

Thu 23 Feb 2012 10:57 Blues aim to record third win over Irish opponents
Cardiff Blues have recorded victories over two Irish opponents in a fortnight with wins over Connacht and Ulster in Cardiff and now travel to Ireland to face a Munster side that have lost just one of their last eight fixtures in all competitions.

The Blues team shows three changes to the side that beat Ulster. In the backs Richie Rees starts in place of Lloyd Williams at scrum half and Chris Czekaj starts at fullback in place of Ben Blair, who moves to the bench. There is only one change in the forwards with Xavier Rush pulling out through illness and is replaced at number 8 by Maama Molitika.

Speaking ahead of the match Justin Burnell said:

“Munster have a fantastic development programme and always seem to find those one or two players that when their internationals are away can step up for them.”

“It’s going to be quite interesting who their latest find is.”

“They will be good at Thomond Park as always but it’s a fantastic opportunity for our players to show their worth.”

“There’s always a great atmosphere and we relish going there to play in front of their very vocal support.”

“The Blues and Munster both have a game in hand and if we can take their scalp it would put us above them and we would be back in the top four.”

Munster v Cardiff Blues
At Thomond Park, 7.05pm

Cardiff Blues 15 Chris Czekaj 14 Richard Mustoe 13 Gavin Evans 12 Gavin Henson 11 Tom James 10 Dan Parks 9 Richie Rees

8 Maama Molitika 7 Martyn Williams 6 Michael Paterson 5 Paul Tito (c) 4 Cory Hill 3 Scott Andrews 2 Ryan Tyrell 1 John Yapp

16 T Rhys Thomas 17 Nathan Trevett 18 Sam Hobbs 19 Macauley Cook 20 Thomas Young 21 Lewis Jones 22 Ceri Sweeney 23 Ben Blair

Not available due to injury:

Xavier Rush - illness
Casey Laulala - hamstring
Fau Filise - shoulder
Dafydd Hewitt - hamstring
James Down - ankle
Andries Pretorius - knee
Deiniol Jones - shoulders