Cardiff Blues v Glasgow Warriors match preview
The Blues will be desperate for a win to make amends of the drubbing they received at the hands of Ulster last week. Outclassed in all aspects of the game, it was their scrums that really gave them cause for concern, and with their visitors Glasgow having a very solid pack of their own, the Blues really have no option but to front up.
They will be boosted by the return of Borrust to their front row, who will be aiming to provide the stability the Blues need to release their dangerous backs. Wales star Leigh Halfpenny is back after a short spell out with injury and the home side will be looking to him and Jamie Roberts to deliver.
Their visitors, Glasgow, approach this game off the back of three wins, although they won’t have been happy with home the game went against Zebre last week, with Glasgow only just scraping home with a 22-19 win.
They approach this game with a much more settled side and with Al Kellock leading the way in the pack, they will be looking to punish the Blues here and hope that with enough possession they can earn a hard fought win on the road. The loss of DTH van der Merwe to injury will hurt them, as he was crucial for their attacking play, but in Seam Lamont and Tommy Seymor they still have the men to do the job.
Defence is going to be key in this match. Glasgow has one of the best in the league, but the nature in which the Blues as a team fell off their tackles last week does not bode well for them. A vast improvement is needed if they are to match Glasgow in intensity and composure, otherwise they could be staring into the face of yet another defeat at home.
Dunbar and Horne will be looking to link up well in the centre for the visitors, and they will have to be at their best to contain Blues centre Roberts from crashing through. The Blues have men to trouble Glasgow from all areas, especially out wide, and the Scottish defence will have to be canny enough to handle the danger men speedsters of Robinson and Halfpenny.
The home side will only threaten though if they get the ball, so it will be the ultimate aim for Glasgow to starve them of possession. Sticking with their effective scrum, and if their lineout continues to improve, they should have the team that can limit the Blues’ possession. The aim for the visitors will be how to improve with the possession they do get, and not squander the chances should they appear.
If the Blues manage some form of parity up front and improve their defence, this match could be a close one, but if the Glasgow pack deliver and play to form, it could be a long evening for the Arms Park faithful.
Kick Off: 6.30pm
Referee: Giuseppe Vivarini
Cardiff Blues: Leigh Halfpenny; Harry Robinson, Gavin Evans, Jamie Roberts, Tom James; Ceri Sweeney, Lloyd Williams; Campese Ma’afu, Rhys Williams, Benoit Bourrust, James Down, Lou Reed, Rory Watts-Jones, Andries Pretorius.
Replacements: Marc Breeze, Taufa’ao Filise, Scott Andrews, Macauley Cook, Robin Copeland, Lewis Jones, Gareth Davies, Dan Fish.
Glasgow Warriors : Peter Murchie, Tommy Seymour, Alex Dunbar, Peter Horne, Sean Lamont, Ruaridh Jackson, Henry Pyrgos, Gordon Reid, Dougie Hall, Mike Cusack, Tom Ryder, Al Kellock (capt), Josh Strauss, John Barclay, Ryan Wilson.
Replacements: Finlay Gillies, Ofa Fainga’anuku, Ryan Grant, Tim Swinson, Chris Fusaro, Niko Matawalu, Byron McGuigan, Stuart Hogg.