Patience they say is a virtue, but for hooker Bryan Byrne, it is a pre-requisite in Leinster’s star-studded squad.

The Pro14 and Heineken Champions Cup holders boast a collection of players the envy of most clubs, but for those on the fringes trying to get more regular game time, it can be a challenging place to be.

Since making his debut four years ago, the 25-year-old has started just five games, with the remaining 27 coming off the bench.

Twin brother Ed put behind him previous knee injury problems to come off the bench in the back-to-back victories over Bath in Europe, while his sibling is hoping to see more action in what is a busy time over the festive period.

A start against Connacht on Saturday night at the RDS (kick-off 7.45pm) would be his first of the season, but the Carlow man knows that head coach Leo Cullen has a wide array of talent to call upon.

"Everyone wants to play every game, but obviously that’s not possible. For the last couple of weeks, lads that aren’t involved are training to the best of their ability for weeks like this. It’s a very important part of the season," he told RTÉ Sport.

"It’s so competitive. You have Irish internationals who don’t get picked for match-day 23s. When that happens, the level has to go up."

It’s 16 years since Connacht last got the better of the reigning Pro14 champions on their own patch – a 26-23 win at Donnybrook – but Byrne is wary of the challenge Andy Friend’s side will bring to the table.

"They had a very good tour down in South Africa and have won five on the bounce. They are in a good spot, their attack is very good and are hard to break down defensively. We know we have to bring our A-game."

Follow Leinster v Connacht on Saturday (7.45pm) with our live blog on RTÉ Sport Online and the News Now app and listen to live commentary on RTÉ Radio 1 Extra