KYLE STEYN and Jack Dempsey both go straight into the Glasgow starting line-up for the pivotal Investec Champions Cup pool match at home to Toulon on Friday night.
The pair have recovered sufficently from long-term injuries to take their place, with captain Steyn not having featured since week two with a serious ankle problem, while back-rower Dempsey last played in November before fracturing a bone in his skull that required surgery.
The timing of the duo’s return is good news both for Warriors who must win to guarantee their last 16 place in the Champions Cup, and also for Scotland head coach Gregor Townsend who named both this week in his squad for the Guinness Six Nations.
Smith has made a number of changes from the team beaten narrowly by Exeter Chiefs last weekend, especially in the forwards where only Ally Miller and Matt Fagerson retain their starting places.
In the backs, Stafford McDowall drops to the bench, with Huw Jones moving off the wing to centre, while Tom Jordan starts at fly-half ahead of Duncan Weir.
Smith said: “Our performance at Sandy Park last weekend was the level that we know we need to produce again tomorrow night.
“Toulon are a team with a proud history in European competition, and we know that we will have to be on top of our game as they come here aiming to secure their own qualification.
“We’re pleased to welcome Kyle and Jack back into our starting lineup after their hard work alongside our medical team, and we look forward to running out at home again tomorrow night.”
Glasgow Warriors (versus Toulon at Scotstoun Stadium in the Champions Cup on Friday at 8pm UK time): J McKay; K Steyn ©, H Jones, S Tuipulotu, K Rowe; T Jordan, G Horne; J Bhatti, G Turner, L Sordoni, M Williamson, R Gray, A Miller, M Fagerson, J Dempsey. Substitutes: J Matthews, O Kebble, Z Fagerson, S Cummings, H Venter, E Ferrie, B Afshar, S McDowall.
Unavailable for selection: Fraser Brown (knee), Gregor Brown (knee), Sebastian Cancelliere (neck), Rory Darge (knee), Jamie Dobie (ankle), Nathan McBeth (shoulder), Enrique Pieretto (knee), JP du Preez (knee), Ollie Smith (knee), Sione Vailanu (knee), Murphy Walker (knee).