GLASGOW WARRIORS are expected to unveil a new signing tomorrow [Tuesday] and it will not be JP du Preez, the giant South African lock who was linked with a move to Scotstoun over the weekend but who is contracted to Sale Sharks until the end of the season.
It is not known whether the new face is a second-row or whether he will join the squad immediately, although Warriors are definitely light on numbers in this position at the moment with Scott Cummings ruled out of action for up to two months last week with a a hand injury, Kiran McDonald sidelined for a likely minimum of six weeks last month with a kidney injury and Hamish Bain yet to feature this season following shoulder surgery during the summer.
That leaves Richie Gray, Lewis Bean and Rob Harley as the only recognised second-rows currently available in the senior squad, with academy prospects Alex Samuel, Max Williamson (both 19) and Euan Ferrie (20) the next cabs off the rank.
Meanwhile, Warriors assistant Pete Murchie has insisted that the team are expecting a tough challenge when they face struggling Zebre this Saturday. The Italian side currently prop up the United Rugby Championship table as the only team to have lost all three matches so far, and with the start of Scotland’s Autumn Test schedule just a fortnight away, several leading players are set to be rested.
However, Murchie was adamant that the desire to rotate the squad will not jeopardise the team’s chances at the Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi.
“You are always trying to get that balance between giving guys opportunities where they are earned and trying to get wins,” he said. “We have made changes through these first three games, and there is also the Scotland element where some players are managed. “So, we’ll have a look at selection this weekend, but if you go away to Zebre and make too many changes because you think it is in the bag, then history tells us you are likely to come unstuck.
“I know they haven’t had a great start to this year, but they are a dangerous team,” he added. “They’ve got guys like Carlo Canna playing at 10, and if you aren’t on your game then he’s got the ability to rip you apart.
“A couple of guys will come in, potentially, but we won’t be making wholesale changes. We know we will have to play well.”
Murchie added that Scotland prop Oli Kebble is one player who could come back into contention this week, having missed the start of the campaign after ankle surgery.
Ali Price and Zander Fagerson returned to raining last week but won’t come into the selection mix until the following Friday’s home match against Leinster, meaning that they will play only one game before Scotland’s opening match of the Autumn against Tonga on 30th October.
Glasgow Warriors have announced that they will urge fans to “Plaster It Purple” at Scotstoun when the club takes on Leinster just before the November break, to raise money and awareness for Glasgow Children’s Hospital Charity. Supporters attending the game are being encouraged to dress in purple for the match.
“We are delighted to have Glasgow Warriors continue their generous support with this Plaster It Purple charity match,” said William McGowan, Head of Partnerships & Events at Glasgow Children’s Hospital Charity.
“We rely entirely on fundraising and donations to ensure that we can be there for seriously ill children in hospital with our life-changing projects and support services, and we can’t wait for the big event which will help to raise awareness of and funds for a cause so close to the hearts of many players and fans.”
Glasgow Warriors Managing Director, Al Kellock, added: “In the coming weeks we want to raise as much money and awareness for our charity partner, Glasgow Children’s Hospital Charity.
“Dedicating a night at Scotstoun, on one of our most popular fixtures in the calendar, allows us as a club and the entire Warrior Nation to show our support to the to the kids that the hospital looks after and appreciation to their staff and the families affected by their work, particularly after the challenges of the past 18 months.”
“The night is set to be a very special occasion and we look forward to welcoming the Warrior Nation.”
To donate to Glasgow Children’s Hospital Charity click HERE.
- The Offside Line’s coverage of Glasgow Warriors is powered by McCrea Financial Services.
- McCrea Financial Services sponsor Glasgow Warriors and provide a wide range of financial advisory services including mortgage, pension and retirement planning advice. See www.mccreafs.co.uk to contact them for more information.