Celtic Challenge: Edinburgh can go top with home win over Irish Wolfhounds

Two new faces in Glasgow Warriors match-day squad for Scotstoun clash against Brython Thunder

Poppy Fletcher starts on the bench for Edinburgh versus Irish Wolfhounds at Hive Stadium tomorrow. Image: Peter Watt
Poppy Fletcher starts on the bench for Edinburgh versus Irish Wolfhounds at Hive Stadium tomorrow. Image: Peter Watt

SCOTLAND and GB Sevens winger Rhona Lloyd is set to make her Celtic Challenge debut off he bench for Edinburgh in tomorrow [Saturday] afternoon’s top-of-the-table clash against the Irish Wolfhounds at Hive Stadium.

With the six team league having now split in two for a round-robin conclusion to the campaign, second-placed Edinburgh can jump ahead of their opponents into top spot with a convincingt win this weekend. They will then play their final game against Clovers at Parc Y Scarlets in two Sundays’ time.

Briar McNamara returns to the capital midfield at inside centre, partnering Scotland Women’s player-of-the-year Emma Orr. Captain Sarah Denholm starts in the 10 jersey, having played every minute of the tournament, alongside scrum-half Jenny Maxwell at half back.


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In the pack, Katie Lindsay gets the nod at tight-head prop, while Fiona McIntosh moves into the starting line-up to form a new second-row partnership with Adelle Ferrie of Corstorphine Cougars.

“Our target, once we started to play some games, was to get in the top three,” said Edinburgh head coach Claire Cruikshank.

“We didn’t set that out at the start, so to get into the top three and to be in the major play-offs is a huge success for us. We’re super excited about what’s to come over the next few weeks.

“Tomorrow is another exciting challenge against a tough side that have gone unbeaten, so we’ll need to be at the top of our game infront of the Edinburgh fans at Hive Stadium.”

Corstorphine Cougars scrum-half Zoe Turner is also named in the match-day squad for the first time.

 

Edinburgh (versus Irish Wolfhounds at Hive Stadium in the Celtic Challenge on Saturday at 1pm): N Marlow; N Flynn, E Orr, B McNamara, C Bell; S Denholm ©, J Maxwell; P Muzambe, M Whitehouse, K Lindsay, F McIntosh, A Ferrie, M Gunderson, A Stewart, F Walker. Substitutes: A Ronald, P Fletcher, M Poolman, N Logan, G Bell, Z Turner, H Ramsay, R Lloyd.

 

 

Meanwhile, Scotland international winger Coreen Grant (as a starter) and University of Strathclyde scrum-half Priya Crawford (on the bench) are set to make their first appearances for Glasgow Warriors after being named in the matchday 23 to take on Brython Thunder at Scotstoun in the bottom half of the table round-robin.

The fixture – the club’s final home match in the 2023-24 competition – forms the first half of a Glasgow Warriors double-header, with the men’s team kicking off their URC match against the Dragons just over three hours later at Scotstoun

Sophie Anderson returns to the match-day squad in the second-row, while Grant is selected in the No 14 jersey after an agreed release from  Saracens and Lucy MacRae shifts to full-back in a back-three completed by Roma Fraser, scorer of a spectacular brace last time out.

“The group have really applied themselves well over the last couple of weeks, as we prepare to go out and compete hard in the last two weeks of the competition,” said head coach Chris Laidlaw.

“Coreen has slotted in really well this week in training, and we’re excited to see how she goes. Priya, too, has shown up really well – to have the experience within the programme and potentially make her debut is a credit to her and we’re looking forward to seeing her run on for the first time.

“To be part of the first-ever club double-header as we celebrate Club of Origin night is massively exciting for everyone in the group, and at the club – we can’t wait to run out tomorrow in front of a big crowd and give everyone a performance to cheer.”

 

Glasgow Warriors (versus Brython Thunder at Scotstoun Stadium in the Celtic Challenge on Saturday at 4.30pm): L MacRae; C Grant, C McLaren, G Chicot, R Fraser; C Ainsworth, R Clarke ©; A Tucker, N Simpson, C Brown, S Anderson, E Turner, H Bogan, I Hannay, M Hyland. Substitues: K Fraser, D Swann, D Lee, E Thomson, L Winter, A Love., P Crawford, C McDonald.

 


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About David Barnes 3911 Articles
David has worked as a freelance rugby journalist since 2004 covering every level of the game in Scotland for publications including he Herald/Sunday Herald, The Sunday Times, The Telegraph, The Scotsman/Scotland on Sunday/Evening News, The Daily Record, The Daily Mail/Mail on Sunday and The Sun.