Glasgow eye October start for Taqele Naiyaravoro

Taqele Naiyaravoro could make his Glasgow debut next month. Picture: Getty

Taqele Naiyaravoro could make his Glasgow debut next month. Picture: Getty

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GLASGOW Warriors coach Gregor Townsend says he is hopeful of having his major signing of the summer, freshly-capped Australia wing Taqele Naiyaravoro, in Scotland and available for the Guinness Pro12 match away to Munster on 2 October.

The powerful Fiji-born former Waratah wing came off the bench in the 71st minute to make his debut for the Wallabies in the United States last weekend and scored a try two minutes before the end of the 47-10 win. He has not, however, been included in coach Michael Cheika’s World Cup squad and is now due to head to Glasgow, for whom he signed a three-year contract in May.

“We are still waiting for the visa process to be started,” said Townsend. “He’s now back in Australia after being out in the States with the Australia squad but he’s come back early to speed up the visa process now he is no longer with the Australia squad.

“These things can take two or three weeks. I’m hoping for less. We have a game in three weeks against Munster and it would be great news if we could have him for that. Then the next game is a fortnight after so if not Munster then we’d like to think he’d be here for that one.”

Townsend will tonight hand a competitive debut to wing Junior Bulumakau for the visit of Connacht to Scotstoun.

The 24-year-old joined the club from the British Army last month and scored against both Clermont and Canada during pre-season. He comes into the team for the injured Rory Hughes, and will play on the right wing with Lee Jones moving to the opposite side.

Glenn Bryce again starts at full-back, with Peter Murchie and Fraser Lyle forming the centre partnership.

Rory Clegg and Mike Blair, who played together at Newcastle Falcons, make their first starts for the club at stand-off and scrum-half respectively.

After coming on as a second-half replacement in last Saturday’s 16-10 home loss to Scarlets in the Pro12 opener, Alex Allan starts the game at loosehead, Pat MacArthur returns from illness at hooker and Mike Cusack is again named at tight-head. Lock Kieran Low makes his first start for the club after featuring off the bench in the defeat by Scarlets.

Rob Harley moves to blindside flanker in place of Josh Strauss, with Adam Ashe and Chris Fusaro continuing at No 8 and openside respectively.

Scotland cap Hugh Blake has been named amongst the replacements and could make his first appearance in a Warriors shirt.

Tonight will see Glasgow’s new forwards coach Dan McFarland pit his wits against his former club and Townsend said he had been picking his assistant’s brain. “Yes this week and the week before, when we start to look at the opposition,” said the head coach.

“He certainly brings good insight, he was there 17 years. Who knows what they will do this week knowing that Dan is now here as a coach. We’ll expect an excellent set-piece. They were ranked the best scrum last season, second best at scoring tries from driving mauls, very effective in contact and, on top of that you’ve got a coach in Pat Lam who wants the team to play and move the ball.”

Glasgow

15 - G Bryce

14 - J Bulumakau

13 - P Murchie (c)

12 - F Lyle

11 - L Jones

10 - R Clegg

9 - M Blair

1 - A Allan

2 - P MacArthur

3 - M Cusack

4 - S Cummings

5 - K Low

6 - R Harley

7 - C Fusaro

8 - A Ashe

Subs

16 - K Bryce

17 - J Yanuyanutawa

18 - Z Fagerson

19 - J Eddie

20 - T Holmes

21 - H Blake

22 - G Hart

23 - S Wight

Connacht

15 - T O’Halloran

14 - D Poolman

13 - R Parata

12 - B Aki

11 - M Healy

10 - J Carty

9 - J Cooney

1 - D Buckley

2 - T McCartney

3 - R Ah You

4 - Q Roux

5 - A Browne

6 - J Muldoon (c)

7 - N Fox-Matamua

8 - E Masterson

Subs

16 - D Heffernan

17 - JP Cooney

18 - F Bealham

19 - U Dillane

20 - B Marshall

21 - K Marmion

22 - C Ronaldson

23 - F Carr

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