URC: Glasgow v Cardiff: Warriors’ centre resources stretched

Huw Jones joins Sione Tuipulotu on injured players list, with Duncan Munn set to debut off the bench

Duncan Munn is set to make his Glasgow Warriors debut off the bench against Cardiff in the URC tomorrow night. Image: © Craig Watson - www.craigwatson.co.uk
Duncan Munn is set to make his Glasgow Warriors debut off the bench against Cardiff in the URC tomorrow night. Image: © Craig Watson - www.craigwatson.co.uk

GLASGOW WARRIORS will be without their two frontline international centres during a crucial stretch of the season as they battle on two fronts to secure a favourable URC play-off seeding and progress through the knock-out stages of the Champions Cup, after Huw Jones joined Sione Tuipulotu on the injured player list.

Jones hurt his hand during Scotland’s Six Nations round five defeat to Ireland in Dublin last weekend, with a post from his wife, Annabel, revealing on social media yesterday that the 30-year-old has undergone surgery on the injury. That comes on the back of Tuipulotu being sidelined for three months at the end of February with a knee injury sustained during the national team’s win over England.

“We’re not sure how long he’ll be out for yet,” explained Warriors head coach Franco Smith. “It’s something that can heal more rapidly than one thinks but he won’t be available for the foreseeable future.


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“He got injured during the match against Ireland, just before half-time apparently. It’s his ring finger on his right hand. It’s always difficult [to gauge how long he’ll be out for] as it’s a different injury from an arm or a leg. We’ll just have to take it week by week.”

Fortunately for Smith. Warriors are fairly well stocked in the midfield with 2022-23 breakthrough star Tom Jordan and Stafford McDowall occupying the Nos 12 and 13 jerseys for this Friday evening’s visit of Cardiff, while former Scotland Under-20s co-captain Duncan Munn – who is on a partnership contract with Boroughmuir Bears – set to make his competitive debut off the bench.

Smith has made four changes to his starting XV from the side he sent out against Benetton last time out, with Jack Dempsey and Matt Fagerson coming straight back in from Scotland duty to join Euan Ferrie in the back-row, veteran Duncan Weir taking over from Ross Thompson at stand-off, and winger Kyle Steyn (who can also cover centre) returning from the Six Nations to captain the side. Another Six Nations returnee in George Horne is on the bench.

“Everyone is looking forward to being back at home tomorrow night,” said Smith “We know that we will need to be at our best tomorrow night – Cardiff will pose a strong challenge, with a powerful pack of forwards and some high-quality backs that will test us around the park.

“It is also an exciting opportunity for Duncan Munn to represent this club for the first time in a competitive match – he is a local boy proud to pull on the Glasgow shirt, and he has earned his place in the matchday squad.”

 

Glasgow Warriors (v Cardiff Blues at Scotstoun Stadium, Friday @ 3pm): J McKay; S Cancelliere, S McDowall, T Jordan, K Steyn ©; D Weir, J Dobie; N McBeth, J Matthews, L Sordoni, M Williamson, A Samuel, E Ferrie, M Fagerson, J Dempsey. Replacements: G Hiddleston, A Dell, O Kebble, S Manjezi, A Miller, H Venter, G Horne D Munn.

Cardiff: J Beetham; M Grady, M Clark, B Thomas, A Summerhill; T d Beer, E Bevan: R Carré, L Belcher, W Davies-King, S Lewis-Hughes, T Williams, B Donnell, T Young, M Martin. Replacements: E Daniel, R Barratt, C Parker, S Davies, E Jenkins, M Aubrey, U Halaholo, O Lane.

Referee: Frank Murphy (Ireland)

 

Glasgow players unavailable for selection: Jamie Bhatti (foot), Fraser Brown (knee), Gregor Brown (knee), Richie Gray (bicep), Huw Jones (hand), Jack Mann (ankle), JP du Preez (knee), Ollie Smith (knee), Sione Tuipulotu (knee), Sione Vailanu (knee).


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About David Barnes 3891 Articles
David has worked as a freelance rugby journalist since 2004 covering every level of the game in Scotland for publications including he 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.

8 Comments

  1. Why is Jack Dempsey even considered, he should be rested?
    I’ve played at a decent level, now retired, and have a modicum of understanding of what’s required, at my low level of rugger, week in week out under scrutiny, it’s draining.
    My goodness the lad put his body on the line during the six nations, you cannot keep up the highest level required after almost two months of intense rugger.
    I don’t blame him if he feels a wee bit leggy with aching limbs, never mind his mind and focus? Same goes for any of the players who played regularly throughout the competition.
    Hmm, burn out comes to mind?

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      • It’s a fair point, but I would probably have given him the week off too. Venter has been in good form and we’ll need Dempsey fresh (hopefully!) for the big games still to come.

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  2. Bad news about Jones, however Jordan and McDowall are a good partnership and seem to be working well together. The rest of the team looks OK , interesting to see Munn getting a run hope if goes well for him. Hope we can get a good team up for the Quins game on the 5th of April.

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