Stuart Bathgate

GLASGOW have been able to select a strong back line for tonight’s PRO14 match against champions Leinster, but they are down to the bare bones at second row following an injury to Richie Gray.

Although he was one of eight players released by Scotland to play this evening, Gray has been ruled out because of a delayed concussion from last week’s defeat by Ospreys.

With Kiran McDonald still isolating after being identified as a close contact of someone who tested positive for Covid-19, only two fit locks – Hamish Bain and Rob Harley – are available to head coach Danny Wilson.

“Richie’s concussion is a big blow,” Wilson said. “With Richie out, Kiran isolating, Leone Nakarawa recovering from a slight knee injury and Scott Cummings on Scotland duty we’re a bit light in second rows. So we don’t have one on the bench, but young Hamish gets another crack alongside Rob Harley and it’s been great learning for him.”

Huw Jones, Sam Johnson, Nick Grigg and George Horne are all named in the back division after being released by Scotland. Three others who were freed by Gregor Townsend are also in the 23 – Harley and substitutes George Turner and Ratu Tagive.

While Leinster have won all three of their matches and occupy their familiar position at the top of Conference A, Glasgow have lost two of their three league games. Last time out against Ospreys they should arguably have had the game won by half time, but Wilson said an understandable lack of match fitness had played a role in the 23-15 defeat.

“For 10 players, that was their first minutes of rugby since February, so eight months without playing a game. Obviously what happened is we blew up a little bit in the second half, we lost our way and lost our shape.

“First half I was really pleased with the performance. We should have been three, maybe four, scores up. So we need to build on that performance and make sure it extends over a longer period.”

Glasgow Warriors (v Leinster at Scotstoun, tonight, 8.15pm): H Jones; T Seymour, N Grigg, S Johnson, N Matawalu; P Horne, G Horne; A Seiuli, G Stewart, D Rae, R Harley, H Bain, R Wilson (captain), T Gordon, T Ioane. Substitutes: G Turner, A Allan, E Pieretto, C Fusaro, F Lokotui, J Dobie, B Thomson, R Tagive.

Leinster: J O’Brien; C Kelleher, R O’Loughlin, T O’Brien, D Kearney; H Byrne, L McGrath; P Dooley, J Tracy, M Bent, R Molony, D Toner, J Murphy, S Penny, R Ruddock (captain). Substitutes: D Sheehan, M Milne, T Clarkson, J Dunne, S Fardy, H O’Sullivan, D Hawkshaw, D Leavy.