Three debutants for 1872 Cup clash as Nakarawa returns

Three debutants for 1872 Cup clash as Nakarawa returns

Three players are set to make their club debuts this weekend, as Glasgow Warriors also welcome back Fijian international Leone Nakarawa ahead of tomorrow’s 1872 Cup clash with Edinburgh at Scotstoun.

Head Coach Danny Wilson has made just one alteration to the starting XV that was named ahead of last weekend’s postponed fixture, which sees Aki Seiuli come in for Oli Kebble at loose-head prop.

It means that Scotland U20 star Rufus McLean will make his club debut on the wing this weekend, whilst Ross Thompson starts for the Warriors at fly-half for the first time after making his debut at BT Murrayfield a fortnight ago.

Seiuli’s inclusion means that it’s the same front row that started the clash in the capital on January 2, with George Turner and Zander Fagerson lining up alongside the former Highlander.

Richie Gray and Scott Cummings continue as the second row partnership, having wreaked havoc on the Edinburgh lineout at BT Murrayfield.

Ryan Wilson captains the side from the blindside flank, Tom Gordon and Matt Fagerson completing the back row and the forward pack.

A mixture of youth and experience forms the half-back partnership, as Ali Price – the Glasgow back with the most appearances for the club – lines up alongside fly-half Thompson.

Scotland 7s captain Robbie Fergusson lines up at inside centre, with Nick Grigg starting outside him in the 13 jersey.

McLean once again joins Lee Jones as one half of the wing duo, as Huw Jones lines up at full-back.

There are two further potential debutants named amongst the replacements for tomorrow evening’s encounter, as academy duo Tom Lambert and Ollie Smith are named in a Glasgow matchday 23 for the first time.

Scotland U20 prop Lambert provides cover at loose-head, joining the recently re-signed Johnny Matthews and Argentinian Enrique Pieretto as the front row replacements.

Nakarawa is in line for his first Glasgow appearance in 11 months, with the Fijian’s most recent Warriors outing coming in the club’s last home match pre-COVID-19 against the Dragons back in February 2020.

Rob Harley makes a return to the matchday squad after being unavailable for the trip to BT Murrayfield, whilst Jamie Dobie continues in the 21 shirt.

Academy prospect and Scotland U20 flyer Smith will look to demonstrate his pace and footwork to the Warrior Nation should he come off the bench tomorrow evening, with Brandon Thomson completing the matchday 23.

Speaking to glasgowwarriors.org, Head Coach Wilson said: “Like we said last weekend, we want to give an opportunity to a few boys we think deserve their shot based on their efforts in training over the last couple of weeks.

“There are a lot of highlights in this week’s team selection. We’re excited to see how Ross [Thompson] goes at fly-half and for Rufus [McLean] to get his first run out for the club.

“On the bench we’re looking forward to welcoming back Leone and giving Tom Lambert and Ollie Smith their first taste of senior rugby.

“We’ve worked hard this week in training, and we’re excited to get the game underway.”

Glasgow Warriors team to face Edinburgh in the Guinness PRO14, Saturday 16 January, kick-off 5.15pmpm, live on Premier Sports 1. You can follow the action in our Live Match Centre at glasgowwarriors.org.

1. Aki Seiuli (21)
2. George Turner (55)
3. Zander Fagerson (96)
4. Richie Gray (52)
5. Scott Cummings (74)
6. Ryan Wilson (C) (180)
7. Tom Gordon (26)
8. Matt Fagerson (67)

9. Ali Price (92)
10. Ross Thompson (1)
11. Rufus McLean (0)
12. Robbie Fergusson (6)
13. Nick Grigg (80)
14. Lee Jones (86)
15. Huw Jones (44)

Replacements

16. Johnny Matthews (6)
17. Tom Lambert (0)
18. Enrique Pieretto (9)
19. Leone Nakarawa (72)
20. Rob Harley (240)
21. Jamie Dobie (14)
22. Brandon Thomson (31)
23. Ollie Smith (0)

Unavailable for selection: Alex Allan, Fraser Brown, Adam Hastings, George Horne, Pete Horne, Sam Johnson, Oli Kebble, Paddy Kelly, Sean Kennedy, Niko Matawalu, Kiran McDonald, Ewan McQuillin, Tommy Seymour, Kyle Steyn, George Thornton.

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