URC: Dragons v Edinburgh: Ben Healy one of six debutants in away squad for campaign opener

Fellow new boy Javan Sebastian also comes straight into the starting XV after just one full week with the squad

Ben Healy will make his Edinburgh debut against the Dragons own Saturday afternoon. Image: Edinburgh Rugby.
Ben Healy will make his Edinburgh debut against the Dragons own Saturday afternoon. Image: Edinburgh Rugby.

STAND-OFF Ben Healy and tight-head prop Javan Sebastian are two of the six debutants (five starters and one on the bench) selected by Edinburgh ‘senior’ coach Sean Everitt for tomorrow afternoon’s URC campaign opener against the Dragons in Newport.

Sam Skinner and Dave Cherry – starting at blindside-flanker and hooker respectively – also played for Scotland during their recent World Cup campaign, while Luke Crosbie is covering the back-r0w from the bench.

The other players making their first competitive appearances for Edinburgh are Scotland and Team GB 7s star Ross McCann on the wing, flanker Cameron Neild and No 8 Tom Dodd, while Jordan Edmunds, another 7s player is covering the back three from the bench.


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22-year-old Cammy Scott will make his fourth appearance for the team after being named at full-back in place of Nathan Sweeney, who has impressed during pre-season, missing out through injury.

“There has definitely been a buzz about the squad this week,” said Everitt. “They are excited to get back onto the field and get the campaign started after such a long off-season programme.

“We’re delighted to see a number of players make their debut for the club. It’s always an honour pulling on the jersey for the first time, and it will be a special occasion for those representing the city tomorrow afternoon.

“The players said they are going to be a hard-working, resilient, physical and abrasive team – and that’s what we need to see on Saturday afternoon in Newport, because that’s what it’s going to take to win the game.

“Dragons possess a hugely talented squad and, like us, they’ll be eager to get their season off to the best possible start. We’re excited for the test and the squad will be ready to go come kick-off in Wales.”

 

Edinburgh Rugby (versus Dragons RFC at Rodney Parade in the BKT United Rugby Championship on Saturday at 3.05pm): C Scott; R McCann, M Bennett, M Currie, W Goosen; B Healy, B Vellacott ©; B Venter, D Cherry, J  Sebastian, G Young, J Hodgson, S Skinner, C  Neild, T Dodd. Substitutes: A McBurney, R Hislop, A Williams, M Sykes, L Crosbie, C Shiel, C Dean, J Edmunds.

Dragons: C Evans; C  Baldwin, S Tomkinson, S Hughes ©, J Rosser; A O’Brien, R Williams; A Martinez, B Roberts, L Fairbrother, M Screech, B Carter, G Nott, H Keddie, O Griffiths. Substitues: J Benjamin, R Jones, L Yendle, J Davies, S Lonsdale, D Blacker, W Reed, J Dixon.

 

Unavailable: Luan de Bruin (back), Darcy Graham (hip), Mikey Jones (ankle), James Lang (calf), Ben Muncaster (knee), Scott Steele (hip), Nathan Sweeney (hamstring), Tim Swiel (ankle), Jamie Ritchie (shoulder).

International rest: Ewan Ashman, Grant Gilchrist, Blair Kinghorn, Viliame Mata, Duhan van der Merwe, WP Nel, Pierre Schoeman, Hamish Watson.

International selection: Emiliano Boffelli


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About David Barnes 4012 Articles
David has worked as a freelance rugby journalist since 2004 covering every level of the game in Scotland for publications including The 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.

1 Comment

  1. Already clocking up a significant injury list. And with so many still out for the World Cup, it’s going to be a slog to go down to Wales and come away with some points. But a win is needed to set the tone for the season, anything less and a top 8 position will look like a mountain to be climbed.
    It’s still a good potential team, the right attitude will be what brings home the points.

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