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Saracens fly-half Owen Farrell returns from injury to start for the two-time European Rugby Champions Cup winners on Sunday against Pool 3 winners Leinster Rugby at the Aviva Stadium, live on BT Sport.
This will be the third meeting between No. 1-ranked Leinster and the holders, with Leinster winning the two previous pool stage encounters in 2010/11.
It is also the seventh consecutive season that Saracens have reached the quarter-finals, and they have won their last five in a row.
This is the fourth time in the last five seasons that Leinster have progressed to the knockout stage, winning their last two quarter-finals.
.@ProperChurch: “I like the way they play and how they try to open teams up.”
— Leinster Rugby (@leinsterrugby) March 30, 2018
Leinster have won their last eight home games in the Champions Cup, with those victories coming by an average margin of 25 points.
Saracens have won three of their last four away games against Irish opposition (L1).
Owen Farrell is the top points scorer (81) in the competition this season, and is third on the all-time list with 677 behind Scarlets’ Stephen Jones (869) and Ronan O’Gara of Munster (1,365).
Leinster’s Luke McGrath has six try assists to his name this season, the most of any player in the competition.
Leinster Rugby line-up
15. Rob Kearney; 14. Fergus McFadden, 13. Garry Ringrose, 12. Isa Nacewa, 11. James Lowe; 10. Johnny Sexton, 9. Luke McGrath; 1. Cian Healy, 2. Sean Cronin, 3. Tadhg Furlong, 4. Devin Toner, 5. James Ryan, 6. Scott Fardy, 7. Dan Leavy, 8. Jordi Murphy
16. James Tracy, 17. Jack McGrath, 18. Andrew Porter, 19. Rhys Ruddock, 20. Max Deegan, 21. Nick McCarthy, 22. Joey Carbery, 23. Rory O’Loughlin
15. Alex Goode; 14. Liam Williams, 13. Marcelo Bosch, 12. Brad Barritt, 11. Sean Maitland; 10. Owen Farrell, 9. Richard Wigglesworth; 1. Mako Vunipola, 2. Jamie George, 3. Juan Figallo, 4. Maro Itoje, 5. George Kruis, 6. Nick Isiekwe, 7. Schalk Burger, 8. Jackson Wray
16. Schalk Brits, 17. Richard Barrington, 18. Titi Lamositele, 19. Dom Day, 20. Blair Cowan, 21. Ben Spencer, 22. Alex Lozowski, 23. Chris Wyles
Match Centre - Preview - Lineups
Leinster Rugby marched into the European Rugby Champions Cup semi-finals with a 30-19 win over Saracens after a dominant second half display at the Aviva Stadium.
- Garry Ringrose opened the scoring for the Irish province with a delightful try after three minutes, before No. 10’s Johnny Sexton and Owen Farrell exchanged penalties throughout the first half.
- Saracens centre Marcelo Bosch slotted over a penalty from the halfway line on the stroke of half-time to reduce the deficit to one point at the interval. But it was after half-time that Leinster started to dominate.
- Dan Leavy and James Ryan exchanged a one-two near the breakdown after 45 minutes which allowed the former to exploit a gap in the Saracens line and dive over the try line, putting Leinster 12 points ahead.
- They scored a third try just before the hour mark through Maori All-Black James Lowe who powered over the whitewash with the help of several Leinster forwards in the maul.
- Blair Cowan’s try for Saracens with 15 minutes to play gave the visitors a flicker of hope, but the home side were able to see out the remaining time for a comfortable success and secure a Champions Cup semi-final berth.
- Leinster Rugby will play Scarlets at Dublin’s Aviva Stadium in the Champions Cup semi-final on the weekend of 21/22 April.