Adam McBurney, Matt Currie, Boan Venter and Nick Haining named in Edinburgh team to play London Irish

Edinburgh have made four changes for Saturday’s European Challenge Cup clash with London Irish in Brentford.

Adam McBurney will start at hooker for Edinburgh against London Irish. (Photo by Ross Parker / SNS Group)
Adam McBurney will start at hooker for Edinburgh against London Irish. (Photo by Ross Parker / SNS Group)

Mike Blair’s side, who impressed in a 34-10 victory over Cardiff last weekend, are without experienced quartet Pierre Schoeman, Stuart McInally, Hamish Watson and Mark Bennett in their starting XV.

Schoeman, who is named among the substitutes, is replaced by Boan Venter at loosehead. With McInally ruled out by a neck injury, hooker Adam McBurney comes into the side for only his second appearance. Dave Cherry is also unavailable and Patrick Harrison is on the bench for Edinburgh who signed Southern Knights hooker Fraser Renwick this week on a short-term deal to provide additional cover.

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The third change in the pack sees a reshuffle in the back row, with Jamie Ritchie moving from blindside to openside to replace Watson and Haining coming in at six. Magnus Bradbury, last week’s man of the match, stays at No 8.

Matt Currie signed a new contract with Edinburgh this week. (Photo by Ross Parker / SNS Group)

In the backs, Bennett, who scored two excellent tries against Cardiff, makes way for Matt Currie, the young outside centre who signed his first pro contract with Edinburgh this week.

Both sides go into the game having recorded impressive wins in their opening Challenge Cup ties. Edinburgh beat Saracens away 21-18 while London Irish defeated Pau 33-17 in France.

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Blair admitted that he had had to make some tough decisions on who to leave out for the match at Brentford Community Stadium.

“Selection has been one of the hardest parts of the job so far, because guys are training well and putting their hands up, but guys are performing on the pitch as well,” said the Edinburgh coach.

“We’ve spent a lot of time selecting this side and we believe we’ve got a team that can go out there and challenge London Irish.

“We were really pleased with the performance against Cardiff, we left a couple of opportunities out there, but we really enjoyed the intent and the physicality – both important parts of our game – and we’ve just been building on them in training to bring into this weekend’s game.

“I love the way London Irish play. They move the ball around a lot, are really innovative with what they’re trying to do, with their set plays and scrum plays - I think it’ll be an excellent game.”

Edinburgh Rugby (v London Irish, European Challenge Cup, Brentford Community Stadium, Saturday, 3.15pm. Streamed live at

15. Henry Immelman

14. Emiliano Boffelli

13. Matt Currie

12. James Lang

11. Ramiro Moyano

10. Blair Kinghorn

9. Ben Vellacott

1. Boan Venter

2. Adam McBurney

3. WP Nel

4. Jamie Hodgson

5. Grant Gilchrist (c)

6. Nick Haining

7. Jamie Ritchie

8. Magnus Bradbury


16. Patrick Harrison

17. Pierre Schoeman

18. Lee-Roy Atalifo

19. Marshall Sykes

20. Connor Boyle

21. Charlie Shiel

22. Jaco Van der Walt

23. Chris Dean

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