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Saturday 21 October 2017

Les to give Ulster Kiss of Life in chase for title

LEINSTER.

Last Year: 1st & Champions.

In: Kane Douglas (NSW Waratahs), Ben Te'o (South Sydney), Sean McCarthy (Jersey).

Out: L Cullen, B O'Driscoll, Q Roux, J Cooney, J O'Connell, D Hudson, A Goodman.

Best Buy: BEN TE'O - The State of Origin Rugby League star can be a force of nature in the centre.

Prediction: 2nd & Runners-Up.

MUNSTER.

Last Year: 3rd & Semi-finalists.

In: Robin Copeland (Cardiff Blues), Andrew Smyth (Brumbies), Tyler Bleyendaal (Crusaders), Eusebio Guinazu (Bath), Martin Kelly (Trinity College).

Out: J Coughlan, C Laulala, J Downey, I Nagle, N Ronan.

Best Buy: ROBIN COPELAND - The marauding number eight showed his true worth with a succession of barnstorming displays for Cardiff in the Heineken Cup last season. He can do the same for Munster.

Prediction: 4th & Semi-finalists.

ULSTER.

Last Year: 4th & Semi-finalists.

In: Franco van der Merwe (Lions), Wiehahn Herbst (Sharks), Louis Ludik (Agen), Ian Humphreys (London Irish), Sean Reidy (Manukau), Ruaidhri Murphy (Brumbies), Charlie Butterworth, Clive Ross (both Lansdowne).

Out: J Muller, J Afoa, T Court, S Doyle, C Farrell, McAllister, A Macklin, I Porter.

Best Buy: FRANCO VAN DER MERWE - The Springbok lock is, apparently, a carbon copy of the talismanic Johann Muller in terms of what he bring to the lineout as well as being more productive in the physical stakes.

Prediction: 1st & Champions.

CONNACHT

Last Year: 10th.

In: Mils Muliaina, Bundee Aki (both Chiefs), Tom McCartney (Auckland), Quinn Roux, John Cooney , Shane Delaghunt (all Leinster), Ian Porter (Ulster), Shane O'Leary (Grenoble), Niyi Adeolokun (Trinity College).

Out: C Clarke, G Duffy, D Parks, B Wilkinson, K Tonetti, F Murphy, E Griffin, J So'oialo, P O'Donohoe, A Conneely, J Rael.

Best Buy: BUNDEE AKI - The 24 year-old has been a Super 15 winner with The Chiefs and should be on an upward curve.

Prediction: 8th.

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