URC quarter-final: captain Kyle Steyn returns to Glasgow team to face Stormers

George Turner is back on the bench and could make his 100th appearance for the home team

Kyle Steyn is the new Glasgow Warriors captain. Image: Craig Watson
Warriors captain Kyle Steyn is back in the team to play the Stormers. Image: Craig Watson

KYLE STEYN and Josh McKay return to Glasgow’s back division for tomorrow night’s URC quarter-final at home to the Stormers, while hooker George Turner is back from injury and is set to make his 100th appearance off the bench.

Warriors head coach Franco Smith has made five changes in all from the team that struggled to beat Zebre last weekend in the final game of the regular season. McKay, rested for that match, takes over the No 15 jersey from Kyle Rowe. Steyn, who was ruled out by injury a week ago, is on the left wing and resumes the captaincy. Sebastian Cancelliere switches to the right to make room for the skipper, with Facundo Cordero dropping out.

Stand-off Tom Jordan and scrum-half George Horne complete the changes behind the scrum, while up front Scott Cummings returns at lock in place of Max Williamson, who is on the bench.

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“The Stormers have a proud record in the URC playoffs, and we know they will be coming to Scotstoun intent on continuing that record tomorrow night,” Smith said, referring to the Cape Town team’s record of having won the competition two years ago and finishing as runners-up to Munster last year.

“They have some brilliant individuals who have the ability to hurt you from anywhere on the field, in addition to being a physical unit with and without the ball. “We’re looking forward to the challenge and we know the Warrior Nation will make themselves known as they get behind us tomorrow night.”

Eight Warriors players are listed as unavailable for selection: Fraser Brown (knee), JP du Preez (knee), Stafford McDowall (hand), Ally Miller (calf), Alex Samuel (head), Ollie Smith (knee), Lucio Sordoni (foot) and Sione Vailanu (knee).

The Stormers welcome back Warrick Gelant after the full-back was rested for last week’s win against the Lions, but key forward Evan Roos has been ruled out after being concussed in training this week. “We know that it will take a top performance to stay alive in this competition and that is a challenge we have embraced,” their director of rugby John Dobson said.

“We will have to do it without a number of our frontline players due to injuries, but it is a testament to the depth we have built and the quality of our squad that there is plenty of belief. Despite having almost a full team ruled out, we have built up some good momentum heading into the play-offs. This is our first Vodacom URC play-off match away from home after playing six at DHL Stadium and we want to show that we can rise to the occasion.”


Glasgow Warriors (v Stormers at Scotstoun, Saturday 7.35pm): J McKay; S Cancelliere, H Jones, S Tuipulotu, K Steyn (captain); T Jordan, G Horne; J Bhatti, J Matthews, Z Fagerson, S Cummings, R Gray, M Fagerson, R Darge, J Dempsey. Replacements: G Turner, N McBeth,O Kebble, M Williamson, E Ferrie, H Venter, J Dobie, R Thompson.

Stormers: W Gelant; S Hartzenberg, D du Plessis, S Feinberg-Mngomezulu, B Loader;  M Libbok, H Jantjies; B Harris, J Dweba, F Malherbe, S Moerat (captain), R van Heerden, W Engelbrecht, B-J Dixon, H  Dayimani.  Replacements: A-H Venter, S Sithole, N Fouche, A Smith, M Theunissen, C Evans, P de Wet, J-L du Plessis.

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About Stuart Bathgate 1415 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.


  1. Stormers have hit their stride recently and peaked at the right time. This will be a battle and Glasgow will have to lift their game tonight and cut out the errors otherwise they will be on the beach next saturday. One positive piece of news for Glasgow is Stormers’ talented back rower Roos is out due to injury. Hope Glasgow show up tonight! Watched the Munster game last night for about 50 mins but then switched off as Ospreys were completely refereed out of the game. Munster got away with murder at the breakdown and the scrums!

    • Didn’t see the game as I’m working abroad, however listened to it on BBC Wales. The commentary team were pretty critical of a lot of the decisions Holly Davidson made and I see there is even more criticism on the BBC website comments, even from Irishmen. It’s a pity as Ospreys seemed to be up for it and I’m sure we would rather play Ospreys at home rather than Munster away if we get through tonight..
      Talking of BBC radio I’m bitterly disappointed that there is no radio commentary of the Warriors tonight, they will only provide a text update on the website. Shocking for a national broadcaster.

  2. It’s a mistake to drop Rowe completely from the 23, but part of the problem is that I don’t believe Franco really knows what his strongest fifteen is. It’s a nice problem to have, but a settled and dominant performance is long overdue to re-establish credentials at the business end of the season.

    • I agree, it still frustrates me that Franco never uses a 5-3 bench (except against Zebre last week). I’d at least have Rowe on the bench to cover back 3, instead of wasting either Horne or Dobie on the wing.

    • That’s a consequence of Smith developing a large and capable playing squad, which we all applauded through the season.

  3. This is a big, strong, talented team and should be winning in style tomorrow.
    However lack of a kicking option and mental fragility (is it a Scottish thing) trouble me.
    Win this and I’d be fairly confident of having a good lash at it in Munsterland

    • John the Stormers are big, strong and talented, I
      expect us to struggle. If we win this I expect a tame capitulation in Munster, game over

        • John…thanks for a laugh. Tom – I gave you a thumbs up as well. I’m off to the game in a few minutes and share your concerns about resilience, but always try to live in hope.

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