Scottish Rugby News and Opinion


Edinburgh and Glasgow Set For The Weekend

Edinburgh and Glasgow

It feels a little like the calm before the storm this week as both our pro-teams have their eye on a prize, but Edinburgh surely would take immense heart from a somehow getting a league win, while on the other end of the M8, Glasgow will be looking to continue grinding out the wins that take them ever closer to a play-off spot.

With the Six Nations well and truly done, both sides have increased choice to pick from and certainly in the case of Edinburgh, whose understudies have performed less capably than Glasgow’s during the international period, it will be a welcome relief.

Straight back into the team come Ross Rennie and David Denton, although Denton reverts to blindside, his most common position at Edinburgh. Cox and Gilchrist now seem to be the frontline pair in the second row, but with Lozada rumoured to be moving on they surely will be looking to recruit another lock soon, or bring in another EDP player such as McAlpine or perhaps Gray Jnr who has been turning out for the U20s this year?

In the backs, De Luca and Scott team up again to showcase what they can really do while the halfback pairing of Blair and Laidlaw continues and Lee Jones returns from the injury that cut short a promising Six Nations (for him anyway). With Blair moving on at the end of the season, Greig may well move back to 9 and we could see the likes of Tonks or Scott being asked to fill in the 10 shirt next season.

The Scarlets are not short on firepower either with George North and Rhys Priestland returned from international rests and the ever fired up Sean Lamont lurking on the bench.

Edinburgh Rugby vs Scarlets at Murrayfield Stadium
Friday 30 March, kick-off 7.35pm

Edinburgh: Tom Brown, Lee Jones, Nick De Luca, Matt Scott, Tim Visser, Greig Laidlaw (capt), Mike Blair; Allan Jacobsen, Ross Ford, Geoff Cross, Grant Gilchrist, Sean Cox, David Denton, Ross Rennie, Stuart McInally
Andrew Kelly, Kyle Traynor, Jack Gilding, Esteban Lozada, Roddy Grant, Chris Leck, Phil Godman, Jim Thompson

Scarlets: Liam Williams, George North, Gareth Maule, Jon Davies, Andy Fenby, Rhys Priestland, Gareth Davies; Rhodri Jones, Matthew Rees (capt), Deacon Manu, Sione Timani, Dominic Day, Josh Turnbull, Johnathan Edwards, Kieran Murphy
Replacements: Ken Owens, Phil John, Peter Edwards, Damian Welch, Mat Gilbert, Liam Davies, Stephen Jones, Sean Lamont.

Referee: Peter Fitzgibbon (Ireland)

Glasgow have thrown most of their international returnees straight back into the back division, while the capable pack is set to be augmented from the bench, where Richie Gray, Jon Welsh and John Barclay are given a chance to work their way back in to the Warriors way. Duncan Weir continues his stranglehold on the 10 jersey; his battle with Jackson next season may get even more intriguing with a Scotland 10 (who had to be shuffled around the backline just to keep him on the park) newly installed as head coach. Tommy Seymour continues his run on the wing with DTH’s continued recovery from surgery and is starting to look a lot more comfortable in the Glasgow team.

Cardiff meanwhile have named a strong team featuring several Welsh grandslam winners along with prop John Yapp – tipped to join Edinburgh in the off-season – and no sign of Dan Parks.

Teams for Glasgow Warriors vs Cardiff Blues at Firhill
Friday 30th March, live online, on BBC Alba & BBC 2 Wales, k.o 7.35pm

Glasgow Warriors: Stuart Hogg, Federico Aramburu, Alex Dunbar, Graeme Morrison, Tommy Seymour, Duncan Weir, Chris Cusiter; Ryan Grant, Dougie Hall, Mike Cusack, Tom Ryder, Al Kellock (capt), Rob Harley, Chris Fusaro, Ryan Wilson
Replacements: Pat MacArthur, Jon Welsh, Moray Low, Richie Gray, John Barclay, Henry Pyrgos, Ruaridh Jackson, Peter Murchie

Cardiff Blues: Leigh Halfpenny; Alex Cuthbert; Casey Laulala, Jamie Roberts; Tom James; Ceri Sweeney, Lloyd Williams; John Yapp, Ryan Tyrrell, Scott Andrews, Bradley Davies, James Down, Mamma Moitika, Josh Navidi. Xavier Rush (c)
Replacements: tbc

Referee: George Clancy (Ireland)

4 Responses

  1. Despite his good work playing at a higher level for Hamilton this year, and being one of the best performers (playing all 80min of all matches) for the U20s, it’s still a little early for Johnnie Gray to be stepping up to pro level. He’s still only 17, but continually improving and will get there soon enough.

    McAlpine is listed on Glasgow’s site as attached to them, but I believe he has played for Edinburgh. On the Glasgow fan forums, the one set of players we’re not definite about who’ll be around next year is the locks. Gray is obviously away, Swinson coming in, but nobody is quite sure what’s happening with Verbakel and Nick Campbell.

  2. I thought I had seen McAlpine turning out for Edinburgh fairly recently, could have been my imagination though. Have heard rumours Verbakel might be away in the summer, not sure about Campbell.

  3. RM was on the bench last week against Dragons as well. For the life of me I can’t remember if he came on. The will to live may have departed by that time.

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Scottish Rugby News and Opinion