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Scarlets name strong line-up for season opener

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2 Sep 2016

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News, Scarlets
Gareth Davies

Scarlets will get the 2016-17 GUINNESS PRO12 Championship campaign underway at Parc y Scarlets on Saturday 3rd September against Munster Rugby.

Head Coach Wayne Pivac has named an all-star cast, including 11 international players, in his matchday 23 for the championship opener.

Captain Ken Owens will lead the side to the field at Parc y Scarlets in what promises to be a thrilling opening encounter; Dylan Evans and South African international Werner Kruger join him in the front row.

The second row pairing sees Lewis Rawlins link up with Wales international Jake Ball who makes his first appearance of the season whilst Aaron Shingler and John Barclay are joined in the back row by 19-year-old Josh Macleod.

Macleod is set to make his first competitive start for the Scarlets having previously represented the region in two pre-season friendlies. Despite being just nineteen years old, Macleod’s physical stature ensures his presence is felt on the field. He was called into Wales Under 20s squad ahead of the Six Nations Championship earlier this year and celebrated an historic Grand Slam with his country.

The stellar backline sees the return of Liam Williams and Scott Williams, who were both absent for the majority of the 2015-16 campaign, and they’re joined by Rugby World Cup star DTH van der Merwe also making a return from injury aswell as newcomer Rhys Patchell.

Speaking ahead of the opening encounter of the GUINNESS PRO12 campaign head coach Wayne Pivac said: “It’s been nice to have an edge in training. Munster bring a lot of physicality, we played them in the last game of the season last year, it’s fresh in our minds and they will attack us around the fringes.

“We know a lot about them, they’re a strong and proud side with a lot of history like we are. It’s going to be a tough game, as the home games against them have been in the last few seasons.”

Scarlets team to take on Munster, Saturday 3rd September at Parc y Scarlets, kick-off 3pm;

15 Liam Williams, 14 DTH van der Merwe, 13 Scott Williams, 12 Hadleigh Parkes, 11 Steff Evans, 10 Rhys Patchell, 9 Gareth Davies, 1 Dylan Evans, 2 Ken Owens [c], 3 Werner Kruger, 4 Jake Ball, 5 Lewis Rawlins, 6 Aaron Shingler, 7 John Barclay, 8 Josh Macleod

Replacements; Ryan Elias, Wyn Jones, Peter Edwards, David Bulbring, Tadhg Beirne, Jonathan Evans, Dan Jones, Jonathan Davies

Unavailable for selection; Rob Evans, Samson Lee, Tom Price, Tom Williams, Jack Condy, James Davies