Need to Know: Glasgow Warriors v Edinburgh part I, PRO14 Match Preview 2020/21

KO 7.35 at Scotstoun Stadium
Friday 8th January 2021

Live on Premier Sports 2

  • This is the 31st match in the 1872 Cup series. Glasgow have won 15, Edinburgh 14 and there has been 1 draw (the Warriors also won a non-1872 Cup clash at Murrayfield in August 2020).
  • Huw Jones is the only survivor in the Glasgow backline from when these two sides last met at Scotstoun (in December 2019). Zander Fagerson, Scott Cummings and Ryan Wilson are the returning starters in the pack from that fixture.
  • For Edinburgh, Blair Kinghorn and Mark Bennett in the backs as well as Stuart McInally, Grant Gilchrist, Hamish Watson and Viliame Mata in the forwards also started that last clash at Scotstoun.
  • The Glasgow pack is the heaviest selected for any match in the current campaign.

15 Huw Jones
14 Lee Jones
13 Nick Grigg
12 Robbie Fergusson
11 Rufus McLean
10 Ross Thompson
9 Ali Price
ADV Glasgow
ADV Edinburgh
ADV Edinburgh
ADV Edinburgh
ADV Glasgow
15 Blair Kinghorn
14 Eroni Sau
13 Mark Bennett
12 Chris Dean
11 Jack Blain
10 Jaco van der Walt
9 Nic Groom

1 Oli Kebble
2 George Turner
3 Zander Fagerson
4 Richie Gray
5 Scott Cummings
6 Ryan Wilson (c)
7 Tom Gordon
8 Matt Fagerson
ADV Edinburgh
ADV Edinburgh
ADV Glasgow
ADV Glasgow
ADV Glasgow
ADV Edinburgh
ADV Edinburgh
ADV Edinburgh

1 Rory Sutherland
2 Stuart McInally (c)
3 Simon Berghan
4 Andrew Davidson
5 Grant Gilchrist
6 Jamie Ritchie
7 Hamish Watson
8 Viliame Mata

16 Johnny Matthews
17 Aki Seiuli
18 Enrique Pieretto
19 Lewis Bean
20 TJ Ioane
21 Jamie Dobie
22 Brandon Thomson
23 Glenn Bryce
ADV Edinburgh
ADV Edinburgh
ADV Edinburgh
ADV Edinburgh
ADV Glasgow

16 David Cherry
17 Pierre Schoeman
18 Willem Nel
19 Jamie Hodgson
20 Magnus Bradbury
21 Henry Pyrgos
22 Nathan Chamberlain
23 James Johnstone

Tale of the Tape:

62   Tries   57
309   Appearances   347
42   1872 Cup appearances   43
26.5   Average age   26.9
4   Capped players   4

912kg   Pack weight   902kg
602   Appearances   759
69   1872 Cup appearances   79
26.9   Average age   28.3
7   Capped players   7

128   Appearances   440
13   1872 Cup appearances   56
27.2   Average age   27.8
2   Capped players   3

Glasgow Greetings / Edinburgh Introductions:

Rufus McLean will become Warrior number 320 when the game kicks off on Friday night. The winger, who is equally comfortable at full back, was in outstanding form during the under 20 Six Nations in 2020. He will be the 8th player from that squad of Scotland u20s to make his top level club debut, following in the footsteps of Ewan Ashman, Jack Blain, Conor Boyle, Nathan Chamberlain, Rory Darge, Roan Frostwick and Cameron Henderson.

1872 Cup debuts:

  • Robbie Fergusson
  • Rufus McLean
  • Jack Blain

Once A Warrior / Erstwhile Edinburghers:

Warrior numbers 184 (Henry Pyrgos – 147 appearances); 193 (Mark Bennett – 66 apps); and 298 (Andrew Davidson – 8 apps) will all be on the opposing side on Friday. George Turner (14 games for Edinburgh), Lee Jones (57 games) and Glenn Bryce (31 games) have made the reverse journey.

Matchday Milestones:

Ryan Wilson will start for Glasgow for a remarkable 27th consecutive match, having not missed a game for over 14 months. This moves him into 5th equal all-time for this streak alongside David Hilton (27 starts in a row between August 2000 and May 2001). Only 3 players in the club’s history have managed longer runs – Sean Lamont, Jon Petrie and Bernardo Stortoni (twice) – with the Argentinian full backs streak of 43 consecutive starts between September 2007 and March 2009 being top of the tree.

When he is sprung from the bench Willem Nel will play his 150th match for Edinburgh. The prop has made a huge contribution to Scottish rugby since arriving in 2012. While his role at club level may have diminished from the early days (he played 81 out of Edinburgh’s 87 matches from his debut until he went to the RWC in 2015 with Scotland) he remains central to the capital club’s set piece.

Warrior to Watch / Edinburgher to Eyeball:

In the absence of Fraser Brown the top two choices at hooker for Scotland’s Six Nations campaign will be on show at Scotstoun. Both George Turner and Stuart McInally build their game on a huge workrate. As well as playing key roles at scrum and lineout these are two players with high involvements around the park with the Warriors’ hooker averaging 30.1 carries + tackles per 80 minutes in the PRO14 last season and his opposite number managing 28.8.

George is one of the forwards who brings an aggressive edge to the Glasgow pack. He’s an abrasive tackler and a dynamic carrier and was the top performer for tackle breaks in the Warriors’ pack last season. Stuart is more measured but certainly no less effective. His 98% tackle completion rate was 4th best in the league during 2019/20 and he is a relentlessly consistent performer.

Both men are converted back rows and their turnover threat comes into play when they themselves are not the ones making the tackles – and sometimes even then given their ability to work hard and get back on feet. This pair will give it everything on Friday night and neither will be taking any prisoners in the race for league points and Scotland shirts.

Glasgow v Edinburgh at Scotstoun in the PRO12/14 era:

  • 6 wins
  • 2 losses
  • 2 Try BPs
  • 26 points out of a possible 40 (65%)

Most recent match-up:


Referee: Mike Adamson (SRU, 48th competition game)
AR1: Finlay Brown (SRU)
AR2: Dunx McClement (SRU)
TMO: Charles Samson (SRU)

Mr Adamson’s regular season record for 2019/20 in the PRO14:

Matches – 9 (all refs – 101)
Average penalty count – 19.2 per game (all refs – 19.1)
Home penalty percentage – 54% (all refs – 52%)
Average card count – 1.1 per game (all refs – 1.3)
Penalties per card – 17 (all refs – 15)

This will be the 8th time that Mr Adamson has taken charge of a Warriors’ fixture, with all bar one of those games (v Southern Kings in 2017) being 1872 Cup matches against Edinburgh.

There has been a lot of hard graft to get to this point but next month Mr Adamson will become the first Scot to referee in the Men’s Six Nations since 2002.

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