Richard Cockerill’s Edinburgh to face Sale and Newcastle

Richard Cockerill's new-look Edinburgh will be tested in pre-season by Sale and Newcastle. Picture: Getty.
Richard Cockerill's new-look Edinburgh will be tested in pre-season by Sale and Newcastle. Picture: Getty.
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Edinburgh Rugby fans will get the chance to have a first look at Richard Cockerill’s new-look squad when they face Sale Sharks in a pre-season friendly at Boroughmuir’s Meggetland ground on 18 August at 7.35pm.

They will then take on another English top-flight side, Newcastle Falcons, a week later on 25 August at The Greenyards in Melrose at 6pm. The league season is set to begin on the weekend of September 1/2/3, but, as yet, the Pro12 has no confirmed fixtures.

Cockerill, the former England hooker, who coached Leicester Tigers for over a decade, was appointed head coach at Edinburgh in February and, after relocating from France where he was working with Toulon, he has been running the rule over his new squad this summer.

He is working alongside backs coach Duncan Hodge, assistant forwards coach Roddy Grant, defence coach Calum MacRae and head of rugby operations Matt Cornwell.

As he looks ahead to the two friendlies, Cockerill said: “We’re looking forward to hosting two quality sides as part of our pre-season preparations.

“Both Sale and Newcastle will offer the physical test we need ahead of our first competitive fixture.

“I’m keen to see the players perform in a live match environment and to see who puts their hand up for selection ahead of the new season.

“There is a lot to improve here, but there are a lot of good players. Clearly things have not been going as well as people would like, but that is the challenge.”

Edinburgh’s managing director Jonny Petrie added: “We’re excited to reciprocate last season’s pre-season schedule with fixtures against two highly-rated sides.

“We’re grateful to Boroughmuir and Melrose, who will host the summer friendlies, as the pitch at Myreside continues to mature ahead of the season.

“There’s a good buzz around the club at the moment.”