Five changes as Glasgow host Cardiff Blues
|Pro14: Glasgow Warriors v Cardiff Blues|
|Venue: Scotstoun Stadium Date: Friday, 1 December Kick-off: 19:35 GMT|
|Coverage: BBC Alba & BBC Sport website|
Unbeaten Glasgow Warriors make five changes for Friday’s Pro14 meeting with Cardiff Blues at Scotstoun.
Henry Pyrgos and Peter Horne return from Scotland duty to form a new half-back pairing, with Alex Dunbar resuming at outside centre.
Ryan Wilson is also back and prop Siua Halanukonuka makes his first start.
Gareth Anscombe will captain the visitors for the first time from full-back, while Brad Thyer and Kirby Myhill come into the Blues’ front row.
Josh Turnbull returns to the blindside, while Macauley Cook moves to partner George Earle in the second row.
Winger Blaine Scully claims a starting place following international action with USA.
Glasgow made it nine wins from nine league outings with a thumping 47-6 success at Ospreys.
The Blues managed a 36-30 victory at home to Connacht despite being outscored by four tries to three.
In September, the Warriors edged home 20-19 on a visit to Cardiff Arms Park.
“We’re still able to put out a side that I’m confident that can go out to perform against the in-form team in the Championship at the moment,” said Blues’ head coach Danny Wilson.
“We took them as close as can be at our place and could’ve had a home win, which would’ve been quite a feat considering the form they’re now in.
“We know it’s going to be a challenge, we know they’re going to have some internationals back, but it comes off the back of some good wins so we can go up there with a bit of confidence.”
With Ryan Wilson only joining up with the home squad midway through the week, Callum Gibbins continues as captain.
Scotland full-back Stuart Hogg is undergoing further investigations on the hip injury sustained last week in the warm-up for the win over Australia.
“Ryan can come back and just focus on his role,” said head coach Dave Rennie. “He’ll captain the side from next week onwards but Cully has done a good job with the Scotland boys away and we want to keep driving the development of other leaders.
“Cardiff have got some real threats with ball in hand. They’ll be prepared to play and we’ll expect them coming up here to have a real positive mindset.”
Glasgow Warriors: Ruaridh Jackson; Lelia Masaga, Alex Dunbar, Sam Johnson, Leonardo Sarto; Peter Horne, Henry Pyrgos; Alex Allan, George Turner, Siua Halanukonuka, Kiran McDonald, Scott Cummings, Callum Gibbins (capt), Matt Smith, Ryan Wilson.
Replacements: James Malcolm, Jamie Bhatti, D’Arcy Rae, Brian Alainu’uese, Samu Vunisa, George Horne, Adam Hastings, Niko Matawalu.
Cardiff Blues: Gareth Anscombe (capt); Owen Lane, Garyn Smith, Willis Halaholo, Blaine Scully; Jarrod Evans, Tomos Williams; Brad Thyer, Kirby Myhill, Taufa’ao Filise, George Earle, Macauley Cook, Josh Turnbull, Olly Robinson, Nick Williams.
Replacements: Ethan Lewis, Corey Domachowski, Anton Peikrishvili, James Down, Damian Welch, Dane Blacker, Rey Lee-Lo, Tom James.
Referee: Nigel Owens (WRU)
Assistant referees: Lloyd Linton (SRU), Keith Allen (SRU)
TMO: Andrew McMenemy (SRU)