Preview: Glasgow v Leinster

Date published: September 9 2016

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Gregor Townsend has named his Glasgow Warriors team to play Leinster in the first home game of the new season.

The Warriors will run out on the new artificial pitch at Scotstoun Stadium for the first time in front of a crowd in excess of 7,000.

Following last Saturday’s 41-5 win over Connacht in Galway, Fraser Brown replaces Pat MacArthur at hooker and Sila Puafisi comes in for Zander Fagerson at tight-head.

After his Man of the Match display last weekend, Stuart Hogg once again starts at full-back, with Leonardo Sarto named on the right wing and Tommy Seymour lining up on the opposite side.

Alex Dunbar and Sam Johnson form the centre partnership, with Peter Horne and co-captain Henry Pyrgos continuing at fly-half and scrum-half respectively.

Gordon Reid is once again named at loosehead and he’ll pack down in the front-row alongside Brown and Puafisi.

Tim Swinson and co-captain Jonny Gray start their second consecutive game together in the engine room.

It’s also the same back row which started in Galway last Saturday, with Rob Harley, Simone Favaro and Ryan Wilson combining.

Alex Allan and Lee Jones come onto the bench, with Ryan Grant and Sean Lamont not involved this weekend. Allan could make his first appearance in a Warriors shirt since February.

Glasgow Warriors head coach Gregor Townsend said: “We were pleased with aspects of our game last weekend and it was good to start with a win, but there has been plenty to work on in training this week.

“We always have some really good contests with Leinster and they will be coming to Glasgow with confidence following their win against Treviso.

“We’re expecting a capacity crowd of more than 7,000 and we’re looking forward to being back home tomorrow afternoon, playing on the new pitch for the first time in front of our own supporters.”

Meanwhile, there are three changes in personnel from the Leinster team that won their first game of the season last Friday in the RDS against Benetton Treviso, with one change in the backs and two in the forwards.

Rob Kearney continues at full-back but his brother Dave makes his first appearance of the campiagn having returned from a shoulder injury that cost him a place on the Ireland tour to South Africa. Dave will start on the left wing with Fergus McFadden switching wings from last week to start on the right.

Noel Reid and Garry Ringrose are once again selected in the centre while Luke McGrath will captain the side from scrum-half. Last week’s Man of the Match Joey Carbery will make his first start away from home outside him at ten.

In the pack both Cian Healy and Michael Bent continue at loosehead and tighthead, but James Tracy comes in to start at hooker. Tracy came off the bench last week to score Leinster’s third try.

Ross Molony and Mike McCarthy continue in the second row and the final change is in the back row where Jordi Murphy starts his first game of the season from number eight, flanked by Dan Leavy and Josh van der Flier.

Amongst the replacements there is a welcome return from injury for second row Mick Kearney, while Peter Dooley and Tadhg Furlong are involved in a match day squad for the first time this season.

Form: Glasgow Warriors achieved a bonus point victory at Connacht in round 1 and have only lost once in rounds one or two since 2012. This is Warriors first Championship game at Scotstoun since the new 4G pitch was installed, a venue where they have only been defeated just once in a regular season Guinness PRO12 encounter since November 2013. Leinster began the new season with a 20-8 victory at home to Treviso and have not started with a pair of victories in the opening two rounds since 2007/08. The Leinstermen have lost their last three away games in the Guinness PRO12 but have not lost four in a row on their travels since 2010. Each side won its respective home game when the two teams met last season, whilst Leinster’s only previous victory at Scotstoun was 6-0 in November 2012.

The teams:

Glasgow: 15 Stuart Hogg, 14 Leonardo Sarto, 13 Alex Dunbar, 12 Sam Johnson, 11 Tommy Seymour, 10 Peter Horne, 9 Henry Pyrgos (cc), 8 Ryan Wilson, 7 Simone Favaro, 6 Rob Harley, 5 Jonny Gray (cc), 4 Tim Swinson, 3 Sila Puafisi, 2 Fraser Brown, 1 Gordon Reid
Replacements: 16 Corey Flynn, 17 Alex Allan, 18 Zander Fagerson, 19 Tjiuee Uanivi, 20 Lewis Wynne, 21 Ali Price, 22 Rory Clegg, 23 Lee Jones

Leinster: 15 Rob Kearney, 14 Fergus McFadden, 13 Garry Ringrose, 12 Noel Reid, 11 Dave Kearney, 10 Joey Carbery, 9 Luke McGrath (c), 8 Jordi Murphy, 7 Josh van der Flier, 6 Dan Leavy, 5 Ross Molony, 4 Mike McCarthy, 3 Michael Bent, 2 James Tracy, 1 Cian Healy
Replacements: 16 Bryan Byrne, 17 Peter Dooley 18 Tadhg Furlong, 19 Mick Kearney, 20 Dominic Ryan, 21 Jamison Gibson-Park, 22 Cathal Marsh, 23 Zane Kirchner

Date: Saturday, September 10
Venue: Scotstoun Stadium
Kick-off: 15:00 BST (14:00 GMT)
Referee: Johnny Lacey (Ireland)
Assistant Referees: Dan Jones (Wales), Dunx McClement (Scotland)
TMO: Gareth Simmonds (Wales)

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