Rae returns for RDS test
Glasgow Warriors will welcome back tight-head prop D’arcy Rae for tomorrow night’s clash with Leinster at the RDS, with the Scotland international set to make his first appearance for the club since the two sides met at Scotstoun at the end of November.
Rae’s inclusion in Dave Rennie’s matchday 23 means it will be a squad containing 15 internationals making the short trip across the Irish Sea for tomorrow night’s encounter, as five players return to club duty in the second fallow week of the 2020 Guinness Six Nations.
After his stats-dominating shift against the Dragons last time out, Aki Seiuli continues in the front-row alongside Rae and the returning figure of George Turner at hooker.
An unchanged second-row sees Rob Harley and Tim Swinson combine for the second match in succession, the latter having recorded his first try of the season in last Saturday’s victory.
Ryan Wilson will captain the side from the blindside flank, with the 30-year-old joined in the back row by a pair of players returning from Scotland camp in the form of Tom Gordon and Matt Fagerson.
Pete Horne continues at fly-half for a third successive outing, once more linking up with younger brother George in the half-backs.
The midfield combination of Nick Grigg and Huw Jones is retained by Rennie and his coaching staff, following a solid outing in both attack and defence against the Dragons.
Kyle Steyn’s return on the wing means it’s the same back three that helped to put 50 points on Zebre a fortnight ago, as the Scotland 7s flyer once again links up with Tommy Seymour and Glenn Bryce.
After his player of the match outing against the Dragons on Saturday, Jamie Dobie retains his place in the matchday squad by offering scrum-half cover from the replacements bench.
The club’s two most recent debutants are also included once more, with Ewan McQuillin having made his first appearance in a Glasgow match last time out to follow in the footsteps of Mesu Dolokoto a week previously.
Alex Allan completes the front-row replacements, whilst Andrew Davidson and Callum Gibbins cover the back-five of the scrum.
Ruaridh Jackson and Niko Matawalu round out the replacements, the former having dotted down for a brace against Leinster at Scotstoun earlier this season.
Speaking ahead of the match, Rennie said: “Leinster are a good side – they’ve got amazing depth. We’re well aware of the challenge, but we’ve got a good side out on the field ourselves tomorrow night.
“It’s nice to welcome back a handful of international boys. We’ve got a lot of experience in the side with eight centurions in the 23, that level of experience combining with our young guys is good for the club.
“Ewan [McQuillin] scrummaged really strongly on his debut last week so it’s a good chance for him to back up his first appearance.
“We’ve got a game that can trouble anyone – it was a great game over there last year, and we know we’ll have to be at our best to get the better of them in Dublin.”
Glasgow Warriors team to play Leinster in the Guinness PRO14, Friday 28 February, kick-off 7.35pm, live on Premier Sports 2. You can follow the action in the Live Match Centre on glasgowwarriors.org. Glasgow Warriors appearances in brackets.
1. Aki Seiuli (10)
2. George Turner (46)
3. D’arcy Rae (69)
4. Rob Harley (229)
5. Tim Swinson (135)
6. Ryan Wilson (c) (167)
7. Tom Gordon (16)
8. Matt Fagerson (60)
9. George Horne (54)
10. Pete Horne (167)
11. Kyle Steyn (25)
12. Nick Grigg (68)
13. Huw Jones (34)
14. Tommy Seymour (142)
15. Glenn Bryce (29)
16. Mesu Dolokoto (2)
17. Alex Allan (102)
18. Ewan McQuillin (1)
19. Andrew Davidson (7)
20. Callum Gibbins (46)
21. Jamie Dobie (7)
22. Ruaridh Jackson (162)
23. Niko Matawalu (126)
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 (all Scotland)