Dai Young says he has no doubts about handing Cardiff’s raw recruit James Goode a Heineken Cup baptism of fire against the reigning champions’ Lions locks…

The Blues coach will pitch 24-year-old Goode against Munster pair Paul O’Connell and Donnacha O’Callaghan as Cardiff try to keep their Heineken Cup dream alive.

Goode stole line-out ball from ex-Ireland lock Bob Casey in Cardiff’s Anglo-Welsh cup win over London Irish and with Wales lock Robert Sidoli out with a shoulder injury, Young will gamble on the raw youngster, who has made 15 appearances in four seasons.

Cardiff must win the Pool Four clash to stay in the competition after their second-round defeat at home to Leicester, but Young says the ex-Wales Under-21 has proved himself.

“It’s a big test for James,” said Young, “but we are not going to carry people who aren’t good enough and he demonstrated against London Irish that he warrants his selection.

“London Irish pride themselves on their line-out and how well they do on their opponents’ throw, but James was excellent against them.
“He is relishing the prospect of playing against the best line-out combination in European rugby.”

Goode’s second-row partner Deiniol Jones says the Blues locks are up against one of the best line-out combinations in world rugby, but must worry about their own game.

He said: “They are as good as any; they proved that for Ireland against the All Blacks in the summer, as well as against Australia and South Africa in the autumn.

“We have just got to concentrate on doing our own jobs and not focus on them too much.”

Young has only made one change from the side that beat London Irish with British Lions centre Tom Shanklin replacing Fijian flier Mosese Luveitasau, who is out with a knee injury.

But the Welsh region know they face a massive task to try and beat the reigning champs, who are chasing a record sixth-away win in Europe and their 11th straight Heineken Cup win.

Young said: “It’s a must-win game, you have to win your home games and we slipped up against Leicester.

“Two basic errors gave them the game and we must learn from our mistakes or Munster will punish us.

“We have to win three of our four remaining games, we have got to be realistic if we don’t win Sunday’s game, we will be swimming against the tide.”