Preview: Glasgow Warriors v Leinster

Date published: December 4 2015

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Fiji lock Leone Nakarawa will make his 50th appearance for Glasgow when they host Leinster at a sold-out Scotstoun Stadium on Saturday.
 
Stuart Hogg and Taqele Naiyaravoro continue at full-back and right wing respectively, while Tommy Seymour comes in for Sean Lamont on the left wing.
 
Alex Dunbar moves from inside to outside centre, with Peter Horne wearing the number 12 shirt and Mark Bennett not involved this weekend.
 
Duncan Weir comes in for Finn Russell at fly-half and Mike Blair replaces Grayson Hart at scrum-half.
 
In the pack, hooker James Malcolm will make his first start for the Warriors after featuring twice off the bench last month against Cardiff Blues and Treviso.

Ryan Grant starts in place of Gordon Reid at loose-head, with Malcolm replacing Shalva Mamukashvili and Tongan prop Sila Puafisi returning in place of Mike Cusack at tighthead.
 
Nakarawa come in for Tim Swinson and partners captain Jonny Gray in the engine room.
 
In the back-row Josh Strauss replaces Rob Harley at blind-side, Simone Favaro comes in for Chris Fusaro at open-side and after his match-winning try against Treviso, Adam Ashe continues at number eight.
 
Mamukashvili, Swinson, Rob Harley, Finn Russell and Sean Lamont are all named on the bench after starting last Friday's match, while Jerry Yanuyanutawa and Zander Fagerson come into the matchday squad.
 
Glasgow Warriors head coach Gregor Townsend said: "Anytime you play Leinster is exciting. They've been the best team in our league over the last five or six years and they've got real quality.
 
"Leinster come into the game off the back of a very good win last weekend against Ulster and they are one of the teams in the top half of the table who will be looking to get a string of results to move them up into the play-off positions.
 
"James (Malcolm) has worked really hard in training and made notable contributions when he came on against Cardiff Blues and Benetton Treviso, so he deserves the opportunity to start tomorrow and we're looking forward to seeing him play.”

Leinster, meanwhile, have made eight changes to their starting XV,  includung two positional changes in the backs.

Rob Kearney is again selected to start from full-back, although he failed a late fitness test last week against Ulster and didn't start with Isa Nacewa filling in for the 67 times Irish capped number 15.

Zane Kirchner is again selected on the right wing with Dave Kearney coming in on the left. Last week's PRO12 Man of the Match Luke Fitzgerald moves from the left wing to inside centre for his 145th Leinster cap. Ben Te'o will line up alongside him at 13.

In the half backs Ian Madigan shifts from the centre to number 10, with Eoin Reddan starting at scrum-half in his 125th appearance in blue. Reddan came on after 31 minutes against Ulster for the injured Luke McGrath. 

It's a completely new front row as Cullen calls up three Irish capped front rowers in Cian Healy, Richardt Strauss and Marty Moore, while Tom Denton comes in to partner Mike McCarthy in the second row.

Rhys Ruddock and Josh van der Flier will start at blind side and open side respectively, while Jordi Murphy comes in at the base of the scrum. Rudock will also captain the team for the first time this season as he closes in on 100 caps for the province.

Form: Glasgow Warriors have won their last three PRO12 encounters since tripping up at Leinster in Round Five. The Warriors solitary defeat at Scotstoun in the PRO12 in their last 25 matches since New Year 2014 came when Scarlets were the visitors in Round One this season. Leinster have won their last four PRO12 fixtures since they were defeated on a trip to Scarlets in Round Four. The Leinstermen’s only win in Scotland in their last five visits was against Edinburgh at Murrayfield in Round 22 last year. Leinster are attempting a regular season double over Warriors for the first time since 2012/13, which coincidently was the only time they have been victorious at Scotstoun: 6-9 in November 2012.  

The teams:

Glasgow: 15 Stuart Hogg, 14 Taqele Naiyaravoro, 13 Alex Dunbar, 12 Peter Horne, 11 Tommy Seymour, 10 Duncan Weir, 9 Mike Blair, 8 Adam Ashe, 7 Simone Favaro, 6 Josh Strauss, 5 Jonny Gray (c), 4 Leone Nakarawa, 3 Sila Puafisi, 2 James Malcolm, 1 Ryan Grant.
Replacements: 16 Shalva Mamukashvili, 17 Jerry Yanuyanutawa, 18 Zander Fagerson, 19 Tim Swinson, 20 Rob Harley, 21 Ali Price, 22 Finn Russell, 23 Sean Lamont.

Leinster: 15 Rob Kearney, 14 Zane Kirchner, 13 Ben Te'o, 12 Luke Fitzgerald, 11 Dave Kearney, 10 Ian Madigan, 9 Eoin Reddan, 8 Jordi Murphy, 7 Josh van der Flier, 6 Rhys Ruddock (c), 5 Mike McCarthy, 4 Tom Denton, 3 Marty Moore, 2 Richardt Strauss, 1 Cian Healy. 
Replacements: 16 Sean Cronin, 17 Peter Dooley, 18 Tadhg Furlong, 19 Ross Molony, 20 Dominic Ryan, 21 Isaac Boss, 22 Cathal Marsh, 23 Garry Ringrose.

Date: Saturday, December 5
Venue: Scotstoun Stadium
Kick-off: 15:00 GMT
Referee: Nigel Owens (Wales)
Assistant referees: Lloyd Linton (Scotland), Dunx McClement (Scotland)
TMO: Jim Yuille (Scotland)

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