Edinburgh v Ospreys: Mark Bennett to bring up 100 as one of four changes to home starting XV

Ben Vellacott, Sam Skinner and Tom Dodd also added to capital line-up

Mark Bennett will play his 100th game for Edinburgh versus Ospreys tomorrow night. Image: © Craig Watson - www.craigwatson.co.uk
Mark Bennett will play his 100th game for Edinburgh versus Ospreys tomorrow night. Image: © Craig Watson - www.craigwatson.co.uk

MARK BENNETT will become the 41st player to make 100 Edinburgh appearances when he starts in the centre against Ospreys at Hive Stadium tomorrow night after head coach Sean Everitt named a starting XV for the URC clash featuring four changes from last time out against Zebre a fortnight ago.

Alongside Bennett coming in for James Lang, scrum-half Ben Vellacott – who skippers the side – starts in place of Ali Price, Scotland lock Sam Skinner gets the nod in the second-row ahead of the also benched Marshall Sykes, and Tom Dodd comes into the back-row for Jamie Ritchie.

Lang, Price and Sykes are all named on the bench, while Ritchie is rested ahead of Scotland”s Six Nations round four clash against Italy in Rome next Saturday.


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The capital side are boosted by the return to fitness of back-row Ben Muncaster and wing Wes Goosen, who are both named among the replacements.

“We’re excited to be back home at Hive Stadium for what is a hugely important fixture for the club,” said Edinburgh head coach Sean Everitt.

“With the log so tight and teams around us playing each other this weekend, a win is imperative in maintaining our push for a top-eight finish.

“Ospreys are playing with no fear, and they’ll travel north with plenty of confidence, but we’re at home where we love to play under the lights. It’s Friday night and the Edinburgh supporters will be out in full force – it’s set to be a brilliant occasion.”

“We’re delighted to see Mark make his 100th appearance for the club. He’s been a brilliant servant to Edinburgh Rugby and thoroughly deserves a start on a special night for him personally.”

 

Edinburgh (v Ospreys at Hive Stadium, Friday 7.35pm): E Boffelli; H Paterson, M Bennett, M Currie, C Dean; B Healy, B Vellacott ©; B Venter, D Cherry, W Nel, S Skinner, G Young, T Dodd, H Watson, V Mata. Replacements: P Harrison, L de Bruin, J Sebastian, M Sykes, B Muncaster, A Price, J Lang, W Goosen.

Unavailable through injury: Luke Crosbie (shoulder), Darcy Graham (groin), Robin Hislop (knee), Mikey Jones (hamstring), Scott Steele (hip).

Rest for international selection: Ewan Ashman, Grant Gilchrist, Jamie Ritchie, Pierre Schoeman, Duhan van der Merwe.


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About David Barnes 3908 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.

6 Comments

  1. Yes, hesitate to say it, but possible season definer tonight.

    Win all good, pushing for top half, playoffs and Champions Cup, lose and we’ll look like we starting to slide out of it. Which would be a real shame, as when it clicks, we’re a fine team.

  2. Difficult to understand why Dean is selected out of position when Goosen is fit and on the bench. Fearful that Edinburgh will have no penetration in the backs.

  3. You cant help but feel that Edinburgh’s ineffectiveness in attack is due to players playing out of position. Chris Dean is a very effective 12, but not a winger. Matt Currie is the coming man at 13, but they seemed determined to turn him into a hit up the middle 12. Paterson is probably better at 15 than 14, and Boffeli is as effective at 11 as 15. It feels like everyone is out of position except Bennet, whereas if they are one winger short at the moment they could play just one player out of position to fill that hole – or take a chance on Jacob Henry, Lewis Wells or Jack Blain all natural wingers.

    • Precisely and well articulated sir. Its no coincidence rhat when Healy plays with players in their correct positions the team plays much better, Edinburgh may win tonight but it’ll not be easy

    • Absolutely agree-Currie just doesn’t work as a 12.He’s developing well at 13 so should either start ahead of Bennett or should be on the bench with Lang at 12.
      Boff playsv on the wuing for Argentina though he arguably won the match for us in Zebre with an immense display under the high ball.Harry P is getting some more experience and fine being on the wing though.
      I presume Goosen being eased back in after a lengthy injury.Great that he’s in the squad and suspect that,even without an injury,he’ll be on not long afer half-time.

  4. It might be better to give Ritchie some more game time.

    Hopefully Vellacott’s presence will allow Healy to receive the ball closer to the gain line than last time out and Bennett can make an impact. I still don’t regard Dean as an effective winger, but he’s filling-in for absentees in that role in the meantime and Goosen’s return from injury will see him get a wee scamper in the later stages. The pack looks fine.

    The last outing was not encouraging, so I hope this is a step up.

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