Haining and Bennett return for Scarlets trip
Scotland internationals Nick Haining and Mark Bennett both return to the starting line-up as Edinburgh Rugby travel to face Scarlets at Parc y Scarlets in Round 4 of the Guinness PRO14 this Sunday (1 November, kick-off 6.45pm) – live on Premier Sports.
The Scotland duo are named at No. 8 and outside centre respectively as Head Coach Richard Cockerill makes five changes to the side that slipped to defeat against Connacht last weekend.
Henry Pyrgos – who skippers the side – gets the nod at scrum-half, while tighthead prop Murray McCallum make his first start of the season after featuring from the bench six days ago.
George Taylor starts on the wing with Fijian international Eroni Sau unavailable for selection due to the birth of his child.
Elsewhere, new signing Andries Ferreira is named among the replacements with the South African lock set to make his Edinburgh Rugby debut if called upon.
Ahead of the fixture, Head Coach Richard Cockerill, said:
“We were obviously disappointed with last weekend’s result, but we’re moving in the right direction and the squad have continued to work hard this week.
“We’ve got quite a few young guys that are still getting used to this level of rugby, but we’re excited to travel to Wales and take on Scarlets in what is always a tough match-up.
“We’ve got a good record at Parc y Scarlets during my time with the club. We know that we’ll have to play the conditions right and match them from the get-go if we are to come away with a positive result.
The back-three sees Jack Blain continue at fullback after making his first professional start last weekend, with Taylor and Jamie Farndale named on opposite flanks.
Outside centre Bennett returns to action to partner Chris Dean in midfield, while Pyrgos – who makes his first start of the season – links up with Jaco van der Walt at half-back.
Hooker Mike Willemse – twice a try-scorer in last weekend’s defeat to Connacht – packs down alongside prop pairing Pierre Schoeman and McCallum in the front-row, with Scottish locks Andrew Davidson and Lewis Carmichael completing the tight-five.
The inclusion of Haining at No.8 is the only alteration to an otherwise unchanged back-row as Magnus Bradbury and Ally Miller start at blindside and openside flanker respectively.
Edinburgh Rugby team to face Scarlets at Parc y Scarlets in the Guinness PRO14
Sunday 1 November (kick-off 6.45pm) – live on Premier Sports
15. Jack Blain (2)
14. George Taylor (26)
13. Mark Bennett (40)
12. Chris Dean (94)
11. Jamie Farndale (9)
10. Jaco van der Walt (61)
9. Henry Pyrgos (36) CAPTAIN
1. Pierre Schoeman (47)
2. Mike Willemse (24)
3. Murray McCallum (57)
4. Lewis Carmichael (46)
5. Andrew Davidson (6)
6. Magnus Bradbury (80)
7. Ally Miller (15)
8. Nick Haining (16)
Replacements: 16. David Cherry (24) 17. Jamie Bhatti (14) 18. WP Nel (145) 19. Andries Ferreira* 20. Connor Boyle (1) 21. Charlie Shiel (21) 22. Nathan Chamberlain (3) 23. James Johnstone (52)
Unavailable due to injury: Luke Crosbie, Matt Gordon, Viliame Mata, Grant Gilchrist, Damien Hoyland, Fraser McKenzie
Unavailable due to international selection: Simon Berghan, Stuart McInally, Jamie Ritchie, Rory Sutherland, Ben Toolis, Hamish Watson, Darcy Graham, Blair Kinghorn, Duhan van der Merwe, Mesulame Kunavula
*Edinburgh Rugby competitive debut