Leinster v Edinburgh. Team News
Edinburgh team to play Leinster
Edinburgh has made six changes, one of which is positional, from the Magners League victory over Connacht for tomorrow's match against Leinster at Donnybrook.
Alasdair Dickinson returns from an ankle injury to start at loosehead while Simon Cross, who captained an Edinburgh XV against Crawshay's Welsh last week, starts on the bench in his first league game since returning from a loan spell at English first division side Waterloo. Apprentice player Fraser McKenzie has the chance to make his Edinburgh debut after also being named among the replacements. McKenzie, who captained Scotland under 18s last season, scored a try in the under 20s' match against Wales last week at Falkirk. Duncan Hodge will captain the side, after leading Edinburgh to victory in their last league game against Connacht.
Backs coach, Rob Moffat said: "We are third in the league, just eight points behind Leinster with a game in hand. So it's very tight at the top but we know that it can go both ways. This game and the game against the Ospreys will go a long way to deciding where we finish in the league at the end of the season.
"It's good to have some of our Scotland players back after their great win over Wales last week. They will no doubt bring a lot to the team as they are influential players. It was also good for us to get a game against Crawshay's Welsh last week to keep the guys match fit during the break from the league.
"Leinster are in a similar situation to us as they are without their international players this weekend. It should be a good game though, as the matches between the two teams always are. They're usually high scoring given the type of game Leinster and Edinburgh play."
Following last Friday's game against Crawshay's, Fergus Pringle has been suspended from playing for Edinburgh until Thursday 1 March for an act of foul play. The referee took action at the time, and after reviewing the incident during an internal investigation, the club felt it was appropriate to take further action.
Meanwhile, Edinburgh Rugby has introduced a special ticket offer for their next home game against the Ospreys on Friday 2 March at 7.30pm, which will have a Superheroes theme. The "quid a kid" offer allows a child entry to the match for £1 with an accompanying adult at the discounted price of £10. Edinburgh will also be reducing the price of adult tickets for all three of their remaining home games this season, with entrance now costing £15.
Commercial Director, Ian Riddoch said: "Edinburgh Rugby has developed its Superhero marketing promotion in order to appeal to children, especially children in families who have never thought of playing rugby or attending an Edinburgh Rugby match. Our squad is full of international players and fantastically developed athletes who put their bodies on the line every time they take to the field. Their superhuman performances this season are why Edinburgh is challenging at the top of the Magners League and if we are to continue to develop our fan base we need to attract these new supporters to our games.
"If you are eight years old and have never been to a rugby match then you probably don't know who Chris Paterson is, however most children of that age know all about Superman, Batman and all manner of superheroes. If portraying our players as Superheroes is what it takes to grow our crowds and get new fans on board, then great. Once we get them there and they see the game, meet the players and experience the atmosphere, I'm sure the game will sell itself. The players and coaches are
right behind this promotion, so much so that Chris Bentley is wearing Superman pyjamas to bed in the build up to the game!"
Edinburgh team to play Leinster in the Magners League at Donnybrook on Friday 16 February, kick off 7.30pm.
15 Lucio Lopez Fleming
14 Matt Dey
13 Ben Cairns *
12 Duncan Hodge (captain)
11 Simon Webster
10 Alistair Warnock *
9 John Senio
1 Alasdair Dickinson *
2 Andrew Kelly *
3 Geoff Cross *
4 Matt Mustchin
5 Chris Bentley
6 Alasdair Strokosch *
7 Ross Rennie
8 Allister Hogg *
16 Steven Lawrie
17 Allan Jacobsen
18 David Young
19 Simon Cross
20 Fraser McKenzie
21 Greig Laidlaw
22 Peter Jorgensen
* Member of the Scottish Institute of Sport
Unavailable for selection: Mike Blair (collar-bone), Alan MacDonald (knee), Fergus Pringle (suspended), Craig Smith (neck).