Scottish Rugby News and Opinion


PRO14 Round 2: Teams

Glasgow vs Edinburgh - graphic © Scottish Rugby Blog

With losses for both teams in the opening round of the new PRO14 season, both coaches have naturally made adjustments while beginning preparations for the inevitable loss of players during the upcoming International window.

Munster v Edinburgh

Sat 10th October
Thomond Park, Limerick
KO 19:35

Jamie Ritchie and Duhan Van Der Merwe return to the starting lineup for Edinburgh, with both newly announced co-captains Stuart McInally and Grant Gilchrist starting.

Blair Kinghorn is out injured but other than that it’s a strong looking back line and largely first-choice pack. Any worries will revolve around depth on the bench where there a number of inexperience names.

You can read more previewing this game on Gav’s piece here.

Munster: Mike Haley, Andrew Conway, Alex McHenry, Rory Scannell, Matt Gallagher; Ben Healy, Craig Casey; Jeremy Loughman, Rhys Marshall, John Ryan; Fineen Wycherley, Tadhg Beirne, Jack O’Donoghue, Tommy O’Donnell, CJ Stander (Capt).
Replacements: Kevin O’Byrne, James Cronin, Roman Salanoa, Gavin Coombes, John Hodnett, Conor Murray, Jack Crowley, Dan Goggin.

Edinburgh: Damien Hoyland; Darcy Graham, Mark Bennett, George Taylor, Duhan van der Merwe; Jaco van der Walt, Nic Groom; Rory Sutherland, Stuart McInally (Co-captain), WP Nel; Ben Toolis, Grant Gilchrist (Co-captain); Jamie Ritchie, Hamish Watson, Nick Haining.
Replacements: Mike Willemse, Pierre Schoeman, Simon Berghan, Andrew Davidson, Mesulame Kunavula, Dan Nutton, Nathan Chamberlain, James Johnstone.

Referee: Nigel Owens (WRU, 185th competition game)
Assistant Referees: Sean Gallagher, Peter Martin (both IRFU)
TMO: Joy Neville (IRFU)

Unavailable due to injury: Blair Kinghorn, Luke Crosbie, Magnus Bradbury, Henry Pyrgos, Viliame Mata, Fraser McKenzie, Chris Dean, Charlie Shiel, Matt Gordon

Glasgow v Scarlets

Sun 11th October
Scotstoun Stadium, Glasgow
KO 17:15

Ali Price starts at scrum-half for the second week in a row while Huw Jones continues his adventure at fullback. It seems to be working so far for Glasgow, but could it really be a route back to international rugby as Danny Wilson suggested?

Sam Johnson is not yet at full fitness so Stafford McDowall and Nick Grigg continue in the centre. No sign yet of either Leone Nakarawa or new signing, Samoan International TJ Ioane. Richie Gray is set for his 50th Glasgow cap off the bench.

Having Zander Fagerson and Tom Gordon back from Covid isolation is good news, but that’s a strong Scarlets team. Discipline will need to be better, especially at scrum time but with Zander back can hopefully they can get the whole scrum moving forward rather than just Oli Kebble wheeling it.

Gordon probably offers a bit more going forward than Fusaro, but which one is truly first-choice at the moment? Elsewhere in the back row, the highlight of the game could be a head to head (sort of) between Matt Fagerson and Blade Thomson, both of whom will be eyeing a spot in Gregor Townsend’s Scotland squad – set to be announced early next week – with Number 8 arguably one of the most openly available shirts in the Scotland XV.

Glasgow Warriors: Huw Jones; Tommy Seymour, Nick Grigg, Stafford McDowall, Ratu Tagive, Adam Hastings, Ali Price; Oli Kebble, Fraser Brown (Capt); Rob Harley, Scott Cummings; Ryan Wilson, Tom Gordon, Matt Fagerson.
Replacements: George Turner, Aki Seiuli, D’arcy Rae, Richie Gray, Chris Fusaro, George Horne, Pete Horne, Niko Matawalu.

Scarlets: Leigh Halfpenny; Tom Rogers, Jonathan Davies (Capt), Johnny Williams, Steff Evans; Dan Jones, Gareth Davies; Wyn Jones, Ryan Elias, Samson Lee, Jake Ball, Sam Lousi, Blade Thomson, Josh Macleod, Sione Kalamafoni.
Replacements: Ken Owens, Phil Price, Javan Sebastian, Lewis Rawlins, James Davies, Kieran Hardy, Rhys Patchell, Steff Hughes.

Referee: Frank Murphy (IRFU, 36th competition game)
Assistant Referees: Ben Blain, Hollie Davidson (both SRU)
TMO: Andrew McMenemy (SRU)

Additional reporting: Iain Hay

23 Responses

  1. Another Irish province game, what chance the last kick will be a penalty to the Scottish side this time? Having watched Munster beat Scarlets last week I could help but remember
    Connacht Glasgow 2019
    Ulster Edinburgh 2019
    Munster Glasgow 2019
    Edinburgh Ulster 2020.
    All in the balance and a penalty awarded to the irish side with the last kick on each occassion. what are the chances?

  2. Disappointing from Edinburgh….

    But at least they showed up and gave a good battle this time.

  3. Excellent overall performance from Edinburgh, the 1st half forward pass when we were 5 on 2 ultimately proved crucial.
    Still too many errors but much much better than last week.
    Darcy’s footwork on about 70mins absolutely world class

    1. Have to say Darcy has been consistently excellent is all aspects of the game since returning. It’s really hard to look past him for a starting spot in that back three (as good as van Der Merwe and Maitland are) excellent competition on the wing now.

      1. Oh he will get a place in the back three but he was nothing special tonight. Are you watching wearing specs with a rose tint round the borders. He will get his place as he is excellent at covering back for Hogg and he is a tackler, we definitely need one of them that can do the tackling of two, in the back three.

  4. Gilco fumbled and lost the opportunity early on, that killed the momentum in a very dominant phase, whit a butterfingers. Bennett took his try well and put a shift in. Hoyland was a bit lively. WP Nel, score , life in the old dog yet. Disappointing but they were tough to break down.

  5. Can’t help but feel Edinburgh need to recruit a real leader/winner of a player at some point if they are to kick on, a quality All black for example, perhaps next year. Tough on the budget but I don’t see them progressing past a semi-final/ European quarters without it.

    1. Do not agree , Hastings is competent, but who needs him with Kebble and Zanderbags. Hard carriers, this side are going to be immense when Big Naks gets back. Tagive and Huw Jones are very lively.

    1. It did seem a lot like Murphy was overcompensating for the red card a lot. Some bizarre decisions from Glasgow, too, why go for the 3 points against 14 men, especially when the opposition have been warned about repeated infringements?

      1. Agree on the three points, it gave them the opportunity to get composure and regroup. We should have camped in the red zone and watched them fold. Owens brought new life to them , but where was Rob Harley when we needed him ! He was right there in the thick of it. Well done RH.

  6. Overall a good performance against a scarlets side which did not really show up. Should of gotten the bonus point with the red card, lots of potential.

    Why on earth are they keeping Zander Fagerson on for the full 80.. props should not be doing that and it’s not good player management in the long run.

  7. Thought that first half performance from Edinburgh was excellent. Ferocious tackling and harassment of the Munster pack really put them on the front foot. Munster came back hard in the second half and Edinburgh just failed to hold on, but a vast improvement on the last few matches and reason for optimism for the next few.

  8. Rob Harley 200 caps , not out and no where near it. Can we get an interview with Rob ? Get him on the blog !

  9. Way too much optimism in the comments here.

    That was a truly 2nd string Munster side…They could have fielded an entirely new XV that could have whooped us and the XV they fielded against us.

    1. Kilcoyne
    2. Scannell
    3. Archer
    4. Kleyn
    5. Snyman
    6. POM
    7. Cloete
    8. O’Sullivan
    9. Murray
    10. Carberry
    11. Sweetnam
    12. De Allende
    13. Farrell
    14. Earls
    15. Daly

    We have lost 5 in a row now and this is the 2nd time in a month that we have snatched defeat from the jaws victory.

    In the turnover department we lost 6-1 despite having our first choice (and Scotland’s most recent first choice) back-row on the pitch. You know it’s going to happen before it even does…the amount of times the carrier got isolated and/or the support was too slow was unforgiveable.

    We also conceded 13 penalties to their 8, many of which came from being too slow or having poor technique.

    Even though Glasgow won they were not that much better. It was an absolute penalty fest…27!

    I’ve watched every Edinburgh and Glasgow game since rugby commenced and I’ve yet to see a good performance or an entertaining match (2nd half of the Connacht game was decent).

    Might save my rugby viewing for the Bledisloe…what a difference.

    1. I doubt your Munster line up would have beaten Edinburgh if it fielded Snyman and Carberry – both are long term injury absentees and may not be seen at all this season.

  10. I agree with your general sentiment Bazz, while Scotlands exiles are playing well so many of the home bases players have really struggled for form since lockdown. Of our back row options I think only Matt Fagerson looks really hungry. (although I haven’t watched the Scarlets game yet).

  11. Most damning moment for Edinburgh was when they managed to regather a kick with Haining setting up (I think George Taylor) for an almost certain try if he’d had support. He was brought down 5m or so short and was turned over. The camera pans out and the closest Edinburgh players were JOGGING from 10m away to get there. If you aren’t going to sprint to earn yourself an easy try when will you sprint. Absolutely no excuse for the lack of effort there. Shows either worrying fatigue or poor attitude or both. With the score so close it could’ve been the difference

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Scottish Rugby News and Opinion