Schoeman to hit century against Connacht
Scotland internationalist Pierre Schoeman will become Edinburgh Rugby’s 39th centurion when the capital side take on Connacht at Hive Stadium tomorrow night (Saturday 11 November, kick-off 7.35pm) – live on Viaplay.
The fan-favourite and Edinburgh Rugby #1250 is now in his sixth season in the capital and is the 10th front-rower in club history to hit the milestone, joining living Edinburgh legends Allan Jacobsen (double centurion), Craig Smith, Ross Ford and WP Nel in the coveted ‘centurions club’.
Schoeman is one of 11 internationalists named in the starting XV for tomorrow night’s BKT United Rugby Championship clash with table-topping Connacht Rugby, as Senior Coach Sean Everitt makes five changes to the side that took on Leinster in Dublin last weekend.
Edinburgh welcome the return of Fijian number 8 Viliame Mata – absent last week through injury – as Luke Crosbie misses out having sustained a concussion in training.
Scotland centre James Lang gets the nod at inside centre – replacing the injured Matt Currie – after impressing from the bench, and grabbing a score, in the defeat at the RDS Arena.
Hooker Ewan Ashman and tighthead prop Javan Sebastian both start in the front-row, with Dave Cherry handed a place on the bench and WP Nel rested for the Round 4 encounter.
In the back-row, Edinburgh Rugby academy product Connor Boyle starts at openside-flanker with Hamish Watson side lined with an injured cheekbone.
On his team to face Connacht, Everitt said: “It will be a special evening for Pierre [Schoeman] who hits 100 appearances for the club. It’s great that he can do it in front of the Edinburgh fans, and I’ve got no doubt they’ll give him brilliant reception tomorrow night.
“It will be a tough test against a Connacht side who are full of confidence, but we’re raring to go. It’s been a really strong week of training and the squad are excited to be back home.”
An unchanged back-three sees Blair Kinghorn continue at full-back as Wes Goosen and Duhan van der Merwe line-up on opposite wings.
Mark Bennett links up with Lang in midfield as Charlie Shiel (scrum-half) and Ben Healy (stand-off) continue at half-back.
Scotland locks Grant Gilchrist – named skipper – and Glen Young combine in the second-row as back-row Tom Dodd (blindside flanker) makes his third start to complete the pack.
Elsewhere, Boan Venter is named among the replacements where he’s set to make his 50th appearance for the club. Back-row Ben Muncaster is also named on the bench after making his return from a knee injury for FOSROC Super Series side Watsonians last weekend.
Edinburgh Rugby team to face Connacht at Hive Stadium in the BKT United Rugby Championship
Saturday 11 November (kick-off 7.35pm) – live on Viaplay
15. Blair Kinghorn (136)
14. Wes Goosen (13)
13. Mark Bennett (91)
12. James Lang (39)
11. Duhan van der Merwe (76)
10. Ben Healy (3)
9. Charlie Shiel (58)
1. Pierre Schoeman (99)
2. Ewan Ashman (2)
3. Javan Sebastian (3)
4. Glen Young (25)
5. Grant Gilchrist (190) CAPTAIN
6. Tom Dodd (2)
7. Connor Boyle (35)
8. Viliame Mata (117)
16. Dave Cherry (74)
17. Boan Venter (49)
18. Angus Williams (21)
19. Marshall Sykes (44)
20. Ben Muncaster (27)
21. Ben Vellacott (40)
22. Chris Dean (138)
23. Ross McCann (2)
Unavailable: Emiliano Boffelli (toe), Luan de Bruin (back), Luke Crosbie (concussion), Matt Currie (thigh) Darcy Graham (hip), Jake Henry (knee), Mikey Jones (ankle), Cam Neild (knee), Sam Skinner (knee), Scott Steele (hip), Nathan Sweeney (hamstring), Jamie Ritchie (shoulder), Hamish Watson (cheekbone).