Edinburgh Rugby v Cardiff Blues
Date: Fri 28th February 2020
Venue: BT Murrayfield
As usual, an excellent back row unit should provide the backbone to this Edinburgh side who welcome a struggling Cardiff side to BT Murrayfield. Cardiff will be led by Edinburgh old boy Jason Tovey while Simon Hickey continues to steer the ship, picked ahead of Jaco van der Walt – who has re-signed for next season while Hickey has not, as of yet.
The game will also mark a first home start for Charlie Shiel as well as a rare start for loosehead Jamie Bhatti, while there is plenty of oomph and experience on the bench.
Updated: We’ve added the unavailable list. Matt Scott mixed in with the injured group rather than the international group so seems more likely to be last week’s head knock the cause, than an impending start for Scotland…
Edinburgh Rugby: Damien Hoyland, Eroni Sau, James Johnstone, George Taylor, Duhan van der Merwe, Simon Hickey, Charlie Shiel; Jamie Bhatti, Mike Willemse, Simon Berghan, Lewis Carmichael, Grant Gilchrist (capt), Nick Haining, Luke Crosbie, Viliame Mata.
Replacements: Cameron Fenton, Pierre Schoeman, Pietro Ceccarelli, Sam Thomson, John Barclay, Henry Pyrgos, Jaco van der Walt, Chris Dean.
Cardiff Blues: Hallam Amos, Jason Harries, Garyn Smith, Ben Thomas, Aled Summerhill, Jason Tovey, Lloyd Williams, Brad Thyer, Kristian Dacey, Dimitri Arhip, Seb Davies, Rory Thornton, Shane Lewis-Hughes, Olly Robinson, Josh Turnbull.
Replacements: Kirby Myhill, Corey Domachowski, Keiron Assiratti, Ben Murphy, Will Boyde, Lewis Jones, Max Llewellyn, Dan Fish.
Referee: George Clancy
Unavailable: David Cherry, Mark Bennett, Matt Scott, Jack Blain, Fraser McKenzie, Stan South, Darcy Graham, WP Nel, Rory Sutherland, Stuart McInally, Ben Toolis, Jamie Ritchie, Hamish Watson, Magnus Bradbury, Blair Kinghorn
Leinster Rugby v Glasgow Warriors
Date: Fri 28th February 2020
Venue: RDS Arena
A much trickier proposition for Glasgow who travel to face Leinster. The Irish province are probably top of the teams you don’t want to play during International windows given their frightening depth and a stream of talent flowing faster and wider than the Liffey.
Still, the chance to be the first team to beat Leinster in any competition this season is too tasty to pass up and Dave Rennie does have a pretty useful squad available. Once again Huw Jones returns from Scotland duty to bolster the backline while Glenn Bryce continues to impress from fullback.
Updated: Having signed a new contract this week. Grant Stewart gets the week off with George Turner starting and try machine Mesulame Dolokoto on the bench. Glasgow as usual leading the way with their unavailable list, full transparency!
Leinster: Hugo Keenan, Dave Kearney, Jimmy O’Brien, Joe Tomane, James Lowe, Harry Byrne, Luke McGrath, Peter Dooley, Sean Cronin, Michael Bent, Ryan Baird, Scott Fardy, Josh Murphy, Will Connors, Max Deegan.
Replacements: James Tracy, Michael Milne, Jack Aungier, Jack Dunne, Rhys Ruddock, Jamison Gibson-Park, Ciaran Frawley, Fergus McFadden.
Glasgow Warriors: Glenn Bryce, Tommy Seymour, Huw Jones, Nick Grigg, Kyle Steyn, Pete Horne, George Horne; Aki Seiuli, George Turner, D’arcy Rae, Rob Harley, Tim Swinson, Ryan Wilson (capt), Tom Gordon, Matt Fagerson.
Replacements: Mesulame Dolokoto, Alex Allan, Ewan McQuillin, Andrew Davidson, Callum Gibbins, Jamie Dobie, Ruaridh Jackson, Nikola Matawalu,
Referee: Nigel Owens
Unavailable due to injury: Adam Ashe, Bruce Flockhart, Jonny Gray, Siua Halanukonuka, Oli Kebble, Kiran McDonald, Stafford McDowall, Robbie Nairn, Leone Nakarawa, Adam Nicol, Grant Stewart, Jale Vakaloloma, DTH van der Merwe.
International: Fraser Brown, Scott Cummings, Zander Fagerson, Adam Hastings, Sam Johnson, Ali Price, Ratu Tagive (all Scotland)