World Cup contingent return

Thu, 27 Oct 11:44:44 2011

Edinburgh will field five members of Scotland's Rugby World Cup squad in Friday's RaboDirect PRO12 clash with European champions Leinster at Murrayfield.

Chris Paterson is to return at full-back, Nick De Luca at outside centre and the front row of hooker Ross Ford and props Allan Jacobsen and Geoff Cross are also set to start.

All five will be making their first appearances since Scotland's World Cup pool exit, while scrum-half Mike Blair has been named on the bench alongside Netani Talei, who was a member of Fiji's squad in New Zealand.

Scotland flanker Ross Rennie has not been included in the 23-man squad, with Edinburgh opting for a back row of David Denton, Roddy Grant and Stuart McInally.

Edinburgh head coach Michael Bradley said: "Playing at home is an advantage for us and we have the Rugby World Cup boys back so it's shaping up to be a very exciting game.

"Their return has increased the competition for places, particularly with a full international front-row coming back, who should give us a good platform to launch our backline and our back-row, who have performed well in a number of games so far this season."

Captain Greig Laidlaw continues at scrum-half, with 19-year-old Harry Leonard named at fly-half for his first Edinburgh start.

Edinburgh beat Heineken Cup champions Leinster on their last visit to Murrayfield and will be seeking to improve a run of one home loss in six matches.

Bradley added: "The priority for us is to get more points in the RaboDirect PRO12. Home matches with home advantage are critical so we'll be looking for a win.

"Like us, Leinster have a lot of quality players coming back so, while the timing is good for us, it's also good for Leinster so I think it'll be a great match."


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