Edinburgh will definitely end their season this weekend against Treviso at Murrayfield, and with nothing much under threat save Tim Visser’s chance to be top try-scorer in the league (and even that is fairly safe), they have taken it as a chance to bid farewell to some of the players who are leaving by giving a few of them a run from the bench.
Chris Paterson is one of six players named in the squad who will play their last game for the club, making sure the evening will double as an emotional farewell for a number of players.
Paterson has been picked to start against Italian side Benetton Treviso with supporters handed the chance to acknowledge the contributions of the nation’s record male cap holder and points’ scorer before he hangs up his boots.
The remaining five start the match on the bench and include the replacement front-row of Andrew Kelly, Kyle Traynor and Jack Gilding; back-row Alan MacDonald and stand-off Phil Godman, while the departing Mike Blair and Jim Thompson will miss the send-off due to injury (shoulder) and Scotland 7s duty respectively.
Season tickets holders can bring a friend to the Edinburgh Rugby match for free (using voucher C) while all fans can complete a great weekend of rugby with half-price party stand tickets for day two (Sunday) of the Emirates Airline Glasgow 7s using a code from the club’s website edinburghrugby.org.
Edinburgh Rugby team to play Treviso at Murrayfield Stadium on Saturday 5 May (kick-off 7.30pm): Chris Paterson, Tom Brown, Nick De Luca, Matt Scott, Tim Visser, Greig Laidlaw (capt), Chris Leck; Allan Jacobsen, Ross Ford, Geoff Cross, Grant Gilchrist, Sean Cox, David Denton, Ross Rennie, Roddy Grant
Replacements: Andrew Kelly, Kyle Traynor, Jack Gilding, Steven Turnbull, Alan MacDonald, Alex Black, Harry Leonard, Phil Godman
Speaking of matters Glaswegian, they too have farewells to bid, but also still have unfinished business with a play-off spot to be claimed. A bonus point win against Connacht would give them a marginally easier match against the Ospreys as opposed to Leinster, but neither side will be anything less than a stern test for Lineen’s men should they get to the knockout stages.
With that in mind, sentiment has been for the most part set aside, although it is nice to see Aramburu given the captaincy for his last pro game before retirement. Lineen has picked a strong team to run out, but has experience and heft on the bench too in case the Warriors find themselves in a position to go for a bonus point victory. RaboDirectPRO12 Dream Team selections Duncan Weir and Tom Ryder start ahead of Ruaridh Jackson and Al Kellock, respectively.
Everyone wishes them luck for this match; hopefully Lineen’s tenure in charge of Glasgow is not over just yet.
Glasgow Warriors team to play Connacht at Firhill on Saturday 5 May (kick-off 7.30pm): Stuart Hogg, Federico Aramburu (capt), Alex Dunbar, Graeme Morrison, DTH van der Merwe, Duncan Weir, Henry Pyrgos; Jon Welsh, Dougie Hall, Moray Low, Tom Ryder, Richie Gray, Rob Harley, Chris Fusaro, John Barclay
Replacements: Pat MacArthur, Mike Cusack, Ryan Grant, Al Kellock, Calum Forrester, Chris Cusiter, Ruaridh Jackson, Colin Shaw