Team named for 2019/20 Guinness PRO14 opener

Team named for 2019/20 Guinness PRO14 opener

Glasgow Warriors Head Coach Dave Rennie has named the 23 players who will take to the field for Friday night’s Guinness PRO14 opener, as his side kick-off the competition against the Toyota Cheetahs in Bloemfontein.

A starting XV containing no fewer than nine internationals will run out tomorrow night at the Toyota Stadium for their first competitive match of the season, following victory over Ulster in their final pre-season fixture a fortnight ago.

Callum Gibbins will captain the side from openside flanker, the man from New Plymouth having been confirmed as one of the club’s co-captains for a second successive season.

He will be joined in the back-row by a brace of Scotland internationals, as Rob Harley and Matt Fagerson pack down at blindside flanker and number eight respectively.

Andrew Davidson will make his first appearance since re-joining the club on a permanent basis over the summer as he lines up alongside Tim Swinson in the second-row, with Grant Stewart between Oli Kebble and D’arcy Rae in the front-row of the scrum.

Nick Frisby will partner Brandon Thomson at half-back, whilst Huw Jones and Nick Grigg form the centre partnership.

Kyle Steyn and Rory Hughes will look to provide a clinical edge on the wings, with Glenn Bryce pulling on a Glasgow Warriors shirt for the first time in this competition since 2016.

There are two men in line to make their competitive debuts for the club off the bench, as Johnny Matthews and Jamie Dobie are rewarded for their impressive showings in pre-season with a place in the matchday squad.

Bruce Flockhart joins fellow Inverness man Dobie amongst the replacements, with Alex Allan and Adam Nicol completing the front-row substitutes alongside Matthews.

Robbie Nairn is also named on the bench alongside two club centurions, with Ruaridh Jackson and Chris Fusaro bringing a combined 315 caps of experience to proceedings.

Speaking ahead of the match, Dave Rennie said: “The side we’re putting out on the park has a really good blend of youth and experience.

“We’ve had our two hit-outs against Ulster and those were good for us – we were able to make a lot of shifts in our game, especially in the second match.

“We’ve got a good side going out there tomorrow night. There are players in there that have played a lot for us over the past couple of years, and we’re confident that they’ll dig deep and fight hard for each other.”

Glasgow Warriors team to play the Toyota Cheetahs in the Guinness PRO14, Toyota Stadium, Friday 27 September, kick-off 6.05pm (UK time), live on Premier Sports 2. You can follow the game at glasgowwarriors.org and on Twitter @GlasgowWarriors. Glasgow Warriors appearances in brackets:

1. Oli Kebble (32)
2. Grant Stewart (24)
3. D'arcy Rae (61)
4. Andrew Davidson (2)
5. Tim Swinson (127)
6. Rob Harley (212)
7. Callum Gibbins (c) (34)
8. Matt Fagerson (48)

9. Nick Frisby (13)
10. Brandon Thomson (20)
11. Rory Hughes (46)
12. Huw Jones (20)
13. Nick Grigg (56)
14. Kyle Steyn (10)
15. Glenn Bryce (19)

16. Johnny Matthews (0)
17. Alex Allan (90)
18. Adam Nicol (9)
19. Bruce Flockhart (4)
20. Chris Fusaro (164)
21. Jamie Dobie (0)
22. Ruaridh Jackson (151)
23. Robbie Nairn (8)

Not available due to injury: Lee Jones (hamstring), Stafford McDowall (head) and Jale Vakaloloma (shoulder)

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