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Glasgow boss Gregor Townsend relishing home clash

Gregor Townsend is glad to be back at Scotstoun for tomorrow's match. Picture: SNS

Gregor Townsend is glad to be back at Scotstoun for tomorrow's match. Picture: SNS

GLASGOW head coach Gregor Townsend admits his side are eager to enjoy some home comforts on Saturday night.

The Warriors will run out at their Scotstoun base for the first time in six weeks when they take on Scarlets in the RaboDirect Pro12.

Townsend’s men beat Scarlets 17-12 at Parc y Scarlets in October, but the Welshmen have won on two of their last three visits to Glasgow.

The head coach said: “We’re looking forward to our first game at Scotstoun in six weeks. This is a really important period of the season and it’s great that six of our last eight games will be in front of our home support.

“Scarlets are a quality side, who finished in the top four last season and are only seven points and one place behind us in sixth, so they pose a huge threat.

“Although we won down in Wales in October, they beat us home and away last season, so they know what it’s like to win at Scotstoun.

“It’s great for us to be able to welcome back a number of Scotland players, but we haven’t made a lot of changes to the team which narrowly lost to Leinster earlier this month.

“I was pleased with our performance that night, and although we didn’t get the result we wanted, we came very close to beating one of the best sides in Europe.”

Chris Cusiter starts his second consecutive game for Glasgow as captain, while the Warriors have been boosted by the return of a number of Scotland internationals, along with club captain Al Kellock and winger Sean Maitland.

Kellock has been out for three months with an arm injury, while Maitland was injured in Scotland’s opening game of the RBS 6 Nations against Ireland at the start of February and both have been named among the replacements.

Alex Dunbar returns from Dark Blues duty at centre and links up for the first time with Richie Vernon, who scored a brace of tries against Leinster last time out.

After starting all five of Scotland’s RBS 6 Nations games, Duncan Weir returns at fly-half, with Cusiter named at scrum-half.

In the pack, Gordon Reid keeps his place at loose head, while Dougie Hall comes in for Pat MacArthur at hooker and Jon Welsh replaces Ed Kalman at tight head.

Townsend said: “It’s been a frustrating few months for Al Kellock but he’s worked really hard to come back and we’re delighted to have him involved again.

“It’s also a bonus that Sean Maitland has recovered from injury after missing the majority of Scotland’s RBS 6 Nations campaign.”

Glasgow Warriors team to play Scarlets

5. Peter Murchie

14. Tommy Seymour

13. Richie Vernon

12. Alex Dunbar

11. Niko Matawalu

10. Duncan Weir

9. Chris Cusiter (Captain)

1. Gordon Reid

2. Dougie Hall

3. Jon Welsh

4. Tim Swinson

5. Jonny Gray

6. Rob Harley

7. Chris Fusaro

8. Josh Strauss

Substitutes

16. Fraser Brown; 17. Jerry Yanuyanutawa; 18. Moray Low; 19. Al Kellock; 20. Leone Nakarawa; 21. Ruaridh Jackson; 22. Mark Bennett; 23. Sean Maitland

 

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