Connacht to start season at Sportsground

Connacht will kick-off the defence of its Guinness Pro 12 title at the Sportsground against Glasgow Warriors on Saturday September 3 [7.35pm], fixtures for the upcoming 2016/17 season were released yesterday.

It will be the third consecutive home match where Pat Lam’s men have invited the 2015 league champions to Galway after the teams clashed in the final round of the regular season and the Guinness Pro 12 play-offs last term; Connacht winning on both occasions 14-7 and 16-11 respectively.

Connacht’s second outing will again, be at home against Ospreys before the first trip abroad; away to European Champions Cup pool rivals Zebre in Parma.

The first interprovincial match of the season will be against northern rivals Ulster at the Sportsground on Friday October 7 [7.35pm] before the league takes its first break of the year for the opening two rounds of the European Champions Cup.

A week after the European matches will see Connacht on the road to Dublin and the RDS to take on Leinster on Saturday October 29 [5.15pm].

The Christmas calendar sees Connacht travel to Belfast in search of its first victory at Kingspan Ravenhill since 1960, before Munster arrive at the Sportsground on New Year’s Eve [5.30pm].

Eleven of Connacht’s opening 13 Guinness Pro 12 fixtures will be broadcast live on television with only the away match to Newport Gwent Dragons and the home tie versus Benetton Treviso failing to make the grade.

The home fixture against Leinster has also been confirmed for Friday April 14 and will be televised by TG4.

Lam’s charges’ concluding game of the regular season will see them travel to Limerick on Saturday May 6 to take on Munster at Thomond Park.

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