PRO14 Round 10: Glasgow Warriors v Cardiff Blues

Since the backup lads gave the Ospreys a spanking down in Swansea last weekend, Dave Rennie has kept the faith with some of them to make it a double over Welsh regions as Cardiff face Glasgow for the second time this season. The last encounter was in Round 3 and the Warriors came away with the points but only just.

It was probably useful practice though with the internationals missing then too.

There are new pairings at half-back and in the centre: the now-recovered Alex Dunbar makes an appearance at 13 with Sam Johnson, while Pete Horne teams up with Henry Pyrgos. No rest for those who haven’t been jetting around Europe – Finn Russell stopped off in Paris this week while Ali Price celebrated his new 2 year deal at Scotstoun by joining Finn and Hoggy on the trip; the eventual destination was the World Rugby Awards in Monaco.

Away from the jetset lifestyle, Stuart Hogg is undergoing further investigations to figure out how long the hip flexor injury sustained last week might keep him out for.

Tongan international prop Siua Halanukonuka makes his first start for Glasgow alongside George Turner and Alex Allan. With Jonny Gray rested and Tim Swinson injured, Kiran McDonald partners Scott Cummings in the boilerhouse while Ryan Wilson is the only other change. Gibbins remains captain as Wilson has only trained for part of the week following his part in the demolition of Australia.

On the bench there could be impacts of all shapes and sizes, with the impressive Jamie Bhatti alongside Brian Alainu’uese and Niko Matawalu probably not going to be encouraging sights for tired Cardiff players late in the game while George Horne and Adam Hastings could inject some late pace.

Glasgow Warriors: 15. Ruaridh Jackson, 14. Lelia Masaga, 13. Alex Dunbar, 12. Sam Johnson, 11. Leonardo Sarto, 10. Peter Horne, 9. Henry Pyrgos; 1. Alex Allan, 2. George Turner, 3. Siua Halanukonuka, 4. Kiran McDonald, 5. Scott Cummings, 6. Callum Gibbins (Capt), 7. Matt Smith, 8. Ryan Wilson.

Replacements: 16. James Malcolm, 17. Jamie Bhatti, 18. D’Arcy Rae, 19. Brian Alainu’uese, 20. Samu Vunisa, 21. George Horne, 22. Adam Hastings, 23. Niko Matawalu.

Unavailable players: Adam Ashe (ankle), Matt Fagerson (knee), Nick Grigg (head), Rob Harley (knee), Stuart Hogg (hip), Rory Hughes (shoulder), Oli Kebble (foot), Pat MacArthur (hamstring), Greg Peterson (ankle), Tim Swinson (hand), Ratu Tagive (achilles), Richie Vernon (Achilles) and Lewis Wynne (concussion).

Cardiff Blues: Gareth Anscombe (C); Owen Lane, Garyn Smith, Willis Halaholo, Blaine Scully; Jarrod Evans, Tomos Williams; Brad Thyer, Kirby Myhill, Taufa’ao Filise, George Earle, Macauley Cook, Josh Turnbull, Olly Robinson, Nick Williams
Replacements: Ethan Lewis, Corey Domachowski, Anton Peikrishvili, James Down, Damian Welch, Dane Blacker, Rey Lee-Lo, Tom James

At Scotstoun Stadium in the Guinness PRO14 (kick-off 7.35pm) – live on BBC Alba.

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66 comments on “PRO14 Round 10: Glasgow Warriors v Cardiff Blues

  1. pragmatic optomist on

    My expectations are getting higher after last week at Ospreys. It’s 5 points and a 30 point win or I’ll be disappointed . Looking forward to seeing how Hakuna Matata plays, and if he can stabilise the scrum. Also McDonald at lock, who I’ve never seen. Cardiff have improved, but not by enough to threaten I’d have thought.

  2. Mikelinds on

    Frankly made very heavy weather of that! On the upside, how expectations have changed.

    Can’t have been good for a tired 14 man outfit to see Horne jnr. and Nico come on.

    Great – into the 1872 unbeaten in the league.

  3. Fraser on

    Good win, albeit it took a long time to wear Cardiff down with 14 men and a few too many errors.
    G.Horne already looks 100x better than Pyrgos, don’t see why he isn’t ready for a step up now rather than the year or two people have been saying.
    Hastings also had a couple of nice touches in a fairly brief appearance, although P.Horne had a good game at 10 (much better than he looks at 12).
    Substitute Hooker was a bit shaky.

    Red card controversial as usual – refs have definitely been told zero tolerance this year – I felt the other tackler stopped him wrapping his right arm round so yellow maybe would have been fair.

    • Not rocket science on

      Maybe just maybe Scottish rugby is starting to get the decisions we never had in the past, now referees expect us to be winning or there abouts. So, please, let’s not talk ourselves out of that trend. Come on Warriors HQ, can you seriously imagine a Welsh side ever tweeting that “that looked harsh”. The reality is if you slow it down, and play it without sound, his shoulder connects flush with the head with out any attempt to wrap any arms. Easy to see why it was given.

    • RuggersB on

      Agree… G Horne looks ready now. He’s getting close to Price ..never mind Pyrgos. Not sure what there is to be gained holding him back to play Pyrgos who looks unsuited to how the coaches want both Glasgow and Scotland to be playing.

    • Bulldog on

      Agree but job done. Shocking line out , dire rolling maul, slow rucks, poor gain line penetration, looked clueless against 13 men. Rusty from the break , but, same for both sides. The bench were lively against a tired 14. Give Hastings and G Horne more game time or someone will make them an offer, Finn’s off, nothing to lose. It was always going to be a home win, just not the way anyone expected.

      End on a high , Nico entertained, full five points and 10 out of 10 is unbelievable. Bottoms up.

      • Andy Slow on

        You’ve said it all! Poor quality game from both sides and I wonder how different it would’ve been if Cardiff had 15 men on the pitch. Lot’s of bludgeon and very little rapier last night with poor decision making, too many silly kicks and playing too far behind the gain line. Sarto good, George Horne quick across the pitch, quick pass and quick in thought. Developing very nicely.

  4. Big Al on

    Interesting that Pyrgos played today. I think it will be Price that starts the next game with Horne on the bench. They both deserve it on current form.

    Cant complain when Glasgow keep winning. I think its correct that the refs are now expecting Glasgow to dominate and they’re getting more of the 50/50 calls. Long may that continue.

    • TeamCam on

      I think you can complain – that game was dreadful to watch. I’m so glad I wasn’t there freezing my tits of watching that drech. You’re right about the refereeing calls, and I think the same is happening with Scotland, too.

  5. Big Al on

    Looking forward to the first leg of the 1872 now. Edinburgh will be right up for it but Glasgow keep winning without hitting top gear. It should be a cracking game.

    Not sure if Rennie has fixed on his best team yet. I think there might be some surprises for the Montpellier game.

  6. Neil on

    I liked the look of vunisa and nukonaka , both powerful players that we have been missing.

    My 23 for the montpellier game next friday.

    1. Bhatti
    2. Brown (if back)
    3. Faegerson
    4. Gray
    5. Cummings
    6. Wilson
    7. Gibbins
    8. Vunisa
    9. Price
    10. Russell
    11. Sarto
    12. Dunbar
    13. Jones
    14. Matawalu
    15. Hogg
    16. Turner
    17. Allen
    18. Halanukonaka
    19. Big Brian
    20. M.Fagerson
    21. G.Horne
    22. P. Horne
    23. Jones

      • Neil on

        I disagree , pick form over reputation, niko has been on fire everytime he touches the balls and has made far less mistakes in his last few games, seymour needs a kick up the arse and he looks like he has lost his confidence under the highball. Nadolo is weak in defense is know to rush out the line, i want niko attacking him for the full 80.

      • Anon on

        Feeling I need to defend Seymour here. Through a friend of a friend of a friend, he’s just become a father, so let’s cut him a bit of slack. I remember Hogg having a few nightmares when he had his first kid.

      • Sean on

        Agreed Nico has been good. Would have him on the bench certainly.

        Seymour is important to Glasgow. Agree that if he has a few more disappointing games then he might get a rest.

        Good news that we can have this debate with Masaga, Nico, lee Jones all available as alternatives to what appears to be the first choice pair of Seymour and Sarto (who was good last night)

  7. CSC on

    Kudos to Cardiff for playing quick rugby. Glasgow didn’t. They were pedestrian and perhaps somewhat complacent, and on far too many occasions the ball was lost in contact. Extra drills and the application of a leather suppository required.

  8. AJT5 on

    I’m sorry but Pyrgos was absolute dog **** last night. Crab crab crab…pass behind the man. Just doesn’t fit the style of Glasgow/ Scotland as another poster mentioned. Hopefully Horne will get his chance to prove himself and even get a spot in the 6N squad.
    Apart from that it was good to see some of the new names and young lads getting a run out. It will only stand them in good stead and hopefully show bit more continuity when they play again due to injuries and 6N etc. It was never going to be a classic of a game but continuing to win is a sign of a good team

  9. TeamCam on

    It’s amazing that Warriors have yet to put in a complete performance but have won 10 from 10, scored more than three times as many tries as they’ve conceded, conceded the fewest tries in the league, scored try bonus points in 80% of their games and are 17 points clear of their nearest conference rival (who, admittedly, should be getting 5 points today). That’s not bad at all. It’s hard not to see us finishing top of our conference at this point, unless something utterly disastrous happens, like the flight to Montpellier crashes or something ludicrous. If that does happen, the prime suspect has got to be Keith Earls, right?!

  10. TeamCam on

    Scotland up to 5th in the world rankings after Wales scrape a victory against a weaker SA team that Ireland beat by 30+ points.

    • Alanyst on

      We’ve really missed the rankings points party with South Africa’s demise since 2015….Wales have played them twice I think?

      Ireland loom as the team that will define our next 3 or 4 years…Toonie had better start planning!

  11. Jamie on

    Surely George Horne has overtaken Pyrgos now?! The guy is so good at making breaks, it is even a close call between him and price now. Should get into 6 nations squad on this form.

    Pleasing to see the depth in the squad and to think Kebble and Jones are soon to join the fray is great.

    I’d like to see Hastings get more game time though. From what I’ve seen he will be as good as Finn Russell attack wise.

  12. john on

    Steady Jamie (Hastings will be as good as Finn attack-wise) there are good signs but early days, he is (off course) from the best of stock so hopes are high.

    G.Horne seems to improve every game & it must be close to who is in the 23 come March, not sure it makes much sense having 1, 2, 3 SHs playing for Glasgow.

    • Bulldog on

      Is it really early days ? Hastings is 21 , Millfield educated , ex Bath Academy, 12 English Premiership appearances before arriving at Glasgow. He is confident , gives himself space , takes risks and they are coming off. How does he compare to Finn at 21 yrs of age !

      • Pio on

        Russell hadn’t even started a game for Glasgow till he was 21. Hastings is at least on par with his development curve. Looks physically superior but maybe not as much of a maverick/maniac as Finn?

        Either way he’s first team ready.

      • Fraser on

        If you’re good enough, you’re old enough.
        If we have talented players coming through that are performing well and showing real skill then we need to get them game time at the highest level we can.
        Look at the number of young players brought in to the Kiwi Super rugby teams (not to mention the all blacks) and what they achieve.
        It’s a bit tricky with only 2 pro teams, although Russell and other big names going to play abroad is potentially a huge benefit for developing young talent in Scotland.
        More movement between Edinburgh and Glasgow when one team has surplus quality players in a position and the other is lacking would be beneficial for everyone, although of course you need to have cover for internationals and injuries.

      • Bulldog on

        The question was rhetorical.

        Hastings is ready, doesn’t need to take crazy risks, importantly his immediate future is at Glasgow. Finn is off and he needs to arrive in France without a doctors line. Hastings needs to be ready for the closing stages of the PRO 14.

  13. john on

    Martyn Williams gives Wales a B for the AI?!!!!??!!

    Beaten v Australia (fairly comfortably)

    Struggled v a strong but limited Georgia

    Beaten v NZ (very comfortably)

    1 point winners over arguably the worst SA ever

    A B!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • TeamCam on

      That was hilarious. Even better was his response to the suggestion that Scotland are better – really revealing how arrogant and condescending he is towards us – as well as Guscott tearing into Wales. “C, and that’s being generous.” “Who’s going to win the Six Nations?” “Not Wales!” Brilliant.

      • TeamCam on

        Oh, and let’s not forget that they had to resort to cheating against Georgia. I really hope we devastate them in February.

      • FF on

        Pride comes before a fall lads. I’m optimistic but wary of Wales in Cardiff – lose that and our 6N suddenly looks a lot bleaker – they’ll be much better than they were today with their full squad out.

      • Allan on

        I missed that as I didn’t want to listen to Inverdick spout rubbish. Much as Guscott can be a condescending arse, he seems genuinely impressed with scotland at the mo. Williams however has a long and consistent track record of bashing Scotland at every opportunity. Must be all that time with those know nothing plums on ScrumV who still live in the 70s. You know the old NZ saying, “you don’t beat the welsh, you just score more points than them”. Twas ever thus…

        Oh and the yarpies lost by less than a score but Faletau was offside at that chargedown try and J Davies and that fat oaf Butler knew it but were blatantly dishonest about it in the commentary. Well done BBC, well done!

      • Sotonsaltire on

        Just watching the Wales game – haven’t got to the comments at the end but Inverdale is an absolute joke. ‘For the non-rugby fan it might be difficult to explain why Wales are so depleted this week’. Patronising (fill the blank).

    • Bulldog on

      Wales made the most of SA errors, and their were many of them left unpunished. The Bok Scrum,all young lads,was rock solid and Wales were unable to cope. We know what we have to do.

  14. TeamCam on

    “Rennie was pleased the likes of scrum-half Henry Pyrgos “got some serious game time under his belt”…”

    Oh, Dave.

  15. Bulldog on

    I notice Gordon Reid was on the Bench for LI this week. He will be delighted to quit the sick notes however he might be ill thinking about what it will take to win a Scotland Jersey now. Heid doon bum up big man.

  16. Ross Gilchrist on

    My prediction for the 6N against Italy, I’m going to get slaughtered for resting our “big guns” i.e; Stuart Hogg, Finn Russell and Huw Jones but have a think about it, we need to rest these guys at some point…

    1.Alastair Dickinson
    2.Fraser Brown
    3.Zander Fagerson
    4.Ben Toolis
    5.Jonny Gray (C)
    6.Hamish Watson
    7.Luke Hamilton
    8.Ryan Wilson
    9.Ali Price
    10.Peter Horne
    11.Tommy Seymour
    12.Matt Scott
    13.Alex Dunbar
    14.Sean Maitland
    15.Blair Kinghorn

    16.Stuart McInally
    17.Daryl Marfo
    18.WP Nel
    19.Grant Gilchrist
    20.Magnus Bradbury
    21.George Horne
    22.Adam Hastings
    23.Blair Kinghorn

    • Bulldog on

      I am not agreeing we should rest anyone against Italy , though it is usually an injury fest don’t over look Jackson as FB cover !

      As I see it, Jones, Horne and Maitland can cover any where in the back three but Jacko is safe hands. While we want to be ready for 2019 , We have got ourselves in a place to have a crack at the 6N in 2018.

    • Wabster on

      Well seeing Italy is our last game (again…) the team we put out will depend on our position in the table, if we are still in with a chance it’ll be our best team out.

      • FF on

        It’s a 6N match. It should be our strongest team available. We have a summer tour to try new players.

        How many times have we lost in Rome? 4? 5? Too many!

    • 1.8T on

      Does anyone know why we never play Italy in week 1? I’m not meaning to be arrogant towards the Italians and am painfully aware of the numerous bloody noses we have received from them but it seems a bit unfair that the other teams get effectively a warm up match at the beginning that we never seem to get.

      • Alanyst on

        Yep…its a Fixture not a draw…so the idea being the last week is fighting for spots…its assumed we’ll be fifth.

      • Alanyst on

        6N is all about “business” and I guess the richer unions get to fix it to their own benefit…nothing will change until we get a louder voice in the discussions.

      • Tryhard on

        I’m not sure its better to have the Italians first tbh. By the last week of the championship our depth is normally being sorely tested with the amount of injuries picked up, so playing the best teams means we get run over (Wales ’14, Ireland ’15, ’16). Plus Wales played Italy in the 1st round this year and were the only team not to pick up a bonus point.

        Either way, we are playing Italy in the 1st round in 2019.

      • Pio on

        Or why we always get the same split and teams home and away (I’m assuming it’s the samebfor everyone else)

      • JohnMc on

        Pio, for as long as I can remember there has been a bi-ennial repeat of even year/odd year homes and aways for the teams in the old 5N that carried forward into the 6N.
        Your point prompts the thought that if it were to become a 7N then there would have to be three homes and aways for each side. I’ll leave it to Alanyst to work out if that scenario would disturb the longstanding home and away rhythms for Sco, Eng, Fra, Ire and Wal!

      • Bulldog on

        We do get them in the first match you know. We played Italy in Rome in the first ever 6N fixture in 2000 and lost 34-20 . Great weekend , terrible match/ Telfer was furious.

      • Alanyst on

        Good point Tryhard…Italy in Italy week 1 is no cakewalk. To an extent the “rigged” fixture protects the weaker teams from last week hammerings as their depth runs out. It also causes the depth to be tested however with four hard games prior.

        In terms of home/away rhythms…basically there are “odd week” and “even week” fixtures. It would be easy to swap two odd week games…but not between odd and even.

        So we could swap Italy for Wales or England without disrupting the pattern….or can swap Ireland and France….In reality it seems more complexly organised, I imagine due to “horse trading” amongst the unions.

      • Alanyst on

        Adding Georgia doesn’t affect the H/A system…but might affect the horse trading.

        Relegation would really disrupt things unless it was a two year cycle.

      • WestCountryTartanArmy on

        Furthermore, it’s always the same pairs of fixtures on any weekend. i.e. on the weekend we play England (whether Murrayfield or Twickenham) it is ALWAYS Wales-Ireland and France-Italy. So, the order of these pairings can switch but they remain a collective weekend, which further reduces the variety of any 6N.

  17. Mikelinds on

    Totally agree FF. The tour this summer is a good opportunity. GT can see where he is after the 6N and decide who else he might like to have a look at. In the backs for me, if not already blooded, would be Kinghorn, Hastings and Horne jnr.

  18. Checo on

    Blooding the young guys is great but let’s see their game tested in the league across high pressure matches first. I want to see guys know they absolutely need to earn it. There’s a lot of gaps in their skills to develop at league level. We’re less than 2 years to WC so they can come in on the next cycle, sure their attack is good but it’s defensive ability that takes time to develop. The current Scotland team is light on caps so it’s more experience in the current squad that should be continued.

  19. Scrummo on

    Kinghorn, Hastings and Horne are great prospects in the backs. Others like Eastgate, McDowell, Graham and Nairn could be handy as well.

    McCallum, Cummings, Crosbie, Matt Fagerson and Ritchie are top prospects up front as well with others like Nicol not far behind.

    We’re set lads.

    • Finn Andrews on

      If we had to play a Scotland A XV tomorrow I would name the following :

      1 . Alex Allan
      2. Stuart McInally
      3. Adam Nicol
      4. Scott Cummings
      5. Jonny Gray (Captain)
      6. Matt Fagerson
      7. Magnus Bradbury
      8. Luke Hamilton
      9. George Horne
      10. Adam Hastings
      11. Darcy Graham
      12. Stafford McDowall
      13. Aaron Tait
      14. Ross McCann
      15. Blair Kinghorn

      Mixing a bit of youth with experience, I think we could beat anyone from the Southern Hemisphere with this team (except NZ and SA) Everyone is going on about ‘Looking at what is directly in front of us’ that is what got us into the Frank Hadden / Andy Robinson mess! We need to be looking 5 maybe even 10 years in front of where we are today and making sure that the talent pool is constant and remains sustainable.

      • Not rocket science on

        I’d like to see Graham, Hastings and Bradbury fast tracked. I don’t think there’s a need to push anyone else – if Kinghorn comes through great, but there’s plenty of cover at fb. An electric young winger, back up to Finn, and a strong ball carrier. All would be handy in 2019.

      • Scrummo on

        If I was picking an A team it would be:


  20. The Chiel on

    Chris Harris was in the Prem XV of the week in the Times. Didn’t set the heather on fire on debut but Toonie’s picked him out for a reason.

    • Finn Andrews on

      I just don’t think we know enough about him, he’s a bit like Joe Ansbro when he came about or Huw Jones, one a massive success and the other (well not so much) but I think given the way Gregor Townsend has developed this side we need to just see if his talent shines.

      • The Chiel on

        Fair enough, although I would say losing Joe Ansbro through injury retirement was actually a big loss to us at the time ( if not to Stroker’s forehead ).

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