Glasgow Warriors home RaboDirect PRO12 match against Edinburgh Rugby finally takes places this Saturday at Scotstoun (kick off 19:05 BST, 20:05 SAST) and is the only PRO12 game this weekend. The match, which also doubles up as the second leg of the 1872 Cup, was initially due to be played on 1ST of January this year but was called off due to the pitch being waterlogged.
Had there not been the 1872 Cup to play for there would have been little more than pride at stake in this match for Edinburgh. They have missed out on their chance to qualify for next season’s European Champions Rugby Cup by not being able to end sixth or higher on the PRO12 log. Glasgow, who will play in that competition, will be keen to win the match to enhance their already good chance of qualifying for this season’s knockout stage of the PRO12 by ending in the top four on the log. They should also look to win well and try score four tries at least to pick up an all important bonus point for that too as they still have a chance of securing a home semi final by ending second.
Both teams were announced today and they have a similarity in starts, after some time out, for their club captains. Glasgow Warriors will be lead out by Al Kellock, while the Edinburgh Rugby team will be captained by Greig Laidlaw.
Glasgow Warriors Team Announcement
Captain Al Kellock has been named in the Glasgow Warriors side to play Edinburgh Rugby at Scotstoun Stadium on Saturday in the second leg of the 1872 Cup.
Kellock returns to the second row alongside Jonny Gray, making his first appearance since the 29-10 win over Benetton Treviso earlier this month.
The Warriors are 20-16 ahead after the first leg, which was played at Murrayfield on Boxing Day. The second leg was due to be played on New Year’s Day at Scotstoun but was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch.
A win for Glasgow on Saturday would see them move from 4th to 2nd in the RaboDirect PRO12, with just two rounds of the regular season remaining.
Peter Murchie continues at full-back and Tommy Seymour and Sean Maitland line up on either wing.
Mark Bennett keeps his place at outside centre following his man of the match performance against Ulster last week and Finn Russell switches from fly-half to inside centre in place of the injured Peter Horne.
Ruaridh Jackson comes in at fly-half and Chris Cusiter continues at scrum-half.
There are three changes in the pack following last week’s win over Ulster.
Ryan Grant comes in for Gordon Reid, Kellock replaces Tim Swinson and Rob Harley is promoted from the bench to start at blindside flanker, with Josh Strauss moving to No 8 and Ryan Wilson named among the replacements.
Glasgow Warriors head coach Gregor Townsend said: “We were pleased with aspects of the game against Ulster last week, in particular the performance over the last 50 minutes. It’s imperative that we back that up against Edinburgh on Saturday.
“Edinburgh are a really physical side who have beaten Leinster, Munster and Ospreys this season, so we know we’re facing a strong challenge. Every game we play just now has added importance and although we’ve put ourselves in a good position in the league, there is a lot of rugby still to be played.
“Focus and accuracy will be key elements in order to build on our momentum on Saturday night – and if we’re to secure vital league points and retain the 1872 Cup.
“Everyone has had to wait a while for this game but it should be a fantastic occasion and we’re all really looking forward to it.”
The capacity of Scotstoun has been increased to around 10,000 for the remainder of the season and more than 7,700 tickets have already been sold for the game.
Glasgow Warriors team
15. Peter Murchie
14. Sean Maitland
13. Mark Bennett
12. Finn Russell
11. Tommy Seymour
10. Ruaridh Jackson
9. Chris Cusiter
8. Josh Strauss
7. Chris Fusaro
6. Rob Harley
5. Al Kellock (Captain)
4. Jonny Gray
3. Jon Welsh
2. Dougie Hall
1. Ryan Grant
16. Pat MacArthur
17. Jerry Yanuyanutawa
18. Moray Low
19. Leone Nakarawa
20. Ryan Wilson
21. Niko Matawalu
22. Duncan Weir
23. Richie Vernon
Not available due to injury: Mike Cusack (medical/illness), Alex Dunbar (wrist/thumb), Peter Horne (knee), Ed Kalman (back), Sean Lamont (knee), Tom Ryder (knees), Tim Swinson (illness) and DTH van der Merwe (shoulder).
Edinburgh Rugby Team Announcement
Edinburgh Rugby welcome the return of captain Greig Laidlaw to the starting line-up for this Saturday’s 1872 Cup derby decider with Glasgow Warriors at Scotstoun Stadium.
The club captain was given a six-week break following the recent RBS 6 Nations and comes back into the fold to lead the side for the decisive match and the competitive season run-in.
The club can also call on forward trio Grant Gilchrist, Izak van der Westhuizen and Alasdair Dickinson, who were unavailable to play last Saturday through injury.
The remaining two squad changes sees back-row Cornell Du Preez return to the starting line-up and stand-off Piers Francis return from a long-term foot injury to replace the injured Harry Leonard (knee) on the bench.
Edinburgh Rugby head coach, Alan Solomons, said: “I think this is a fantastic way for Greig [Laidlaw] to finish his time with Edinburgh Rugby, first to lead the side against Glasgow in this derby match, then again against Munster in our last home game of the season and then away against a top European side like Leinster.
He will add a lot of value to the team with his experience and leadership and, while your first game back is always tough, he has a good temperament, is a good player, and is the kind of individual that will give a good account of himself.
“While challenging for PRO12 points is the priority for the visitors, the Warriors edge the aggregate 1872 Cup encounter following their 20-16 Boxing Day win at Murrayfield Stadium.
The visitors therefore need not only to win, but win by five points, if they are to prise the silverware from the west this weekend, as an aggregate draw would see it retained by the hosts.
Solomons added: “They [Glasgow] are good side and have generated a lot of confidence in the last few weeks with a lot of fantastic wins, including beating Munster away and Ulster at home.
“They are fighting for a home semi-final in the PRO12 and will come out all guns blazing, let alone that this is a derby.
“There’s 140 years of tradition in this match, so there’s no doubt it’s a game for which our players are always excited and look forward to. We will give absolutely everything to ensure we produce a good performance.”
Edinburgh Rugby Team
15. Jack Cuthbert
14. Tom Brown
13. Matt Scott
12. Andries Strauss
11. Tim Visser
10. Carl Bezuidenhout
9. Greig Laidlaw CAPTAIN
8. David Denton
7. Cornell Du Preez
6. Mike Coman
5. Izak van der Westhuizen
4. Grant Gilchrist
3. Willem Nel
2. Ross Ford
1. Alasdair Dickinson
16. James Hilterbrand
17. Wicus Blaauw
18. Simon Berghan
19. Ben Toolis
20. Tomas Leonardi
21. Grayson Hart
22. Piers Francis
23. Sam Beard