Glasgow v Ospreys: Danny Wilson makes seven changes for crunch match

Nick Grigg is back in the Warriors starting line-up after his impressive showing off the bench against Zebre

Nick Grigg
Nick Grigg in action against the Dragons earlier this season. Image: © Craig Watson. www.craigwatson.co.uk

NICK Grigg returns to Glasgow’s starting line-up to face the Ospreys tomorrow night after playing a key role off the bench in the team’s winning fightback against Zebre last week. The centre is one of seven changes made by Warriors coach Danny Wilson to his starting line-up for the crunch PRO14 Conference A game.

Grigg and Robbie Fergusson are the centre partnership, replacing Huw Jones and Sam Johnson, who are among the players absent on Scotland duty. Lee Jones is on the left wing in place of the injured Cole Forbes, and a fourth change to the back division sees scrum-half Sean Kennedy make his first start of the year, with Jamie Dobie dropping down to the bench.

In the pack, Aki Seiuli comes in at loosehead, and James Scott and Leone Nakarawa form a new second-row partnership. It will be a first start for Scott after two substitute appearances. Nakarawa was an early replacement last week for Gregor Brown, who Glasgow now expect to be out for the rest of the season because of the knee injury he sustained in the 31-20 win in Parma.

The Warriors have also confirmed that openside Chris Fusaro is likely to miss the rest of the season as he recovers from surgery on a knee injury.

A top-three finish in the conference is the only guarantee of a place in next season’s Champions Cup, and a win over the Ospreys is needed for the Warriors to keep their hopes of that alive. The Warriors are ten points behind their opponents, but have two games to play after this match compared to the Ospreys’ one. If they win tonight with a try bonus then beat Dragons and Benetton in the coming weeks, they could overtake the Welsh side into third. Ospreys’ last remaining game is against conference leaders Leinster, who have already qualified for the final.

“Last weekend we created a lot in attack and looked dangerous throughout the game – we will need more of the same this weekend against Ospreys,” Wilson said after naming his team. “We have lost a few boys to injury and international duty, however lots of boys have put their hand up for selection in training this week and have named a strong side.

“Nick has earned his start after his performance off the bench last weekend and we’re looking for him to bring that same energy and enthusiasm on Friday night.

“Ospreys also have players away on international duty. They’ve had a good season and they are the team for us to chase.”

Seven players in all are unavailable because of Scotland duty: Scott Cummings, Matt Fagerson, Johnson, Jones, Oli Kebble, Ali Price and George Turner.

A long list of those unavailable for selection comprises: Alex Allan (foot), Hamish Bain (shoulder), Fraser Brown (neck), Gregor Brown (knee), Forbes (ankle), Fusaro (knee), Richie Gray (head), Adam Hastings (suspended), George Horne (foot), Paddy Kelly (calf), Stafford McDowall (calf), Tommy Seymour (head), Kyle Steyn (leg), Zander Fagerson (suspended).

Glasgow Warriors (v Ospreys at Scotstoun, Friday 8pm): O Smith; R McLean, N Grigg, R Fergusson, L Jones; R Thompson, S Kennedy; A Seiuli, G Stewart, E Pieretto, J Scott, L Nakarawa, R Harley, T Gordon, R Wilson (captain). Substitutes: J Matthews, D Evans, D Rae, K McDonald, T Ioane, J Dobie, I Keatley, R Tagive.

Ospreys: D Evans (captain); D Cross, O Watkin, J Hawkins, K Giles; L Price, R Morgan-Williams; G Phillips, I Phillips, M Fia, L Ashley, R Davies, W Griffiths, M Morris, G Evans. Substitutes: D Lake, R Henry, T Botha, O Cracknell, S Cross, S Venter, J Thomas, T Thomas-Wheeler.

Referee: S Grove-White (Scotland).


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About Stuart Bathgate 1407 Articles
Stuart has been the rugby correspondent for both The Scotsman and The Herald, and was also The Scotsman’s chief sports writer for 14 years from 2000.

3 Comments

  1. Jamie Dobie being selected suggests he won’t be in Scotland’s 23 on Sunday. Would be great to seem him involved against Italy.

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