Thomson to start Gwalia Lightning clash

Thomson to start Gwalia Lightning clash

Scotland star Lisa Thomson has been released from GB Sevens camp to make her Edinburgh Rugby debut against Gwalia Lightning at Cardiff Arms Park this Sunday (28 January, kick-off 1.30pm) – live on Rugby Pass TV.

The 55-times capped centre starts the Celtic Challenge Round 4 clash in Cardiff as one of three changes made to the starting XV by Head Coach Claire Cruikshank.

Thomson takes the place of Briar McNamara in the midfield, with the Watsonians inside centre named among the replacements.

In the pack, University of Edinburgh’s Poppy Fletcher starts at loosehead prop as Exeter Chiefs’ Panashe Muzambe moves to the bench.

Corstorphine Cougars’ lock Adelle Ferrie gets the nod in the second-row with Saracens’ Fiona McIntosh unavailable for selection.

Head Coach Cruikshank said: “After picking up a hard-fought win against the Thunder in Llanelli a fortnight ago, we return to Wales with plenty of confidence. This team is now really starting to find its feet and our self-belief is building with every 80-minute performance.

“We name a consistent side, making just three changes to the starting XV that won at Parc y Scarlets. We’re excited to see Lisa [Thomson] get her first run out for the club. She brings a huge amount of game knowledge and experience, and our young backline will only benefit from playing alongside her.

“With the race for the play-offs heating up, it’s set to be another massive Celtic Challenge clash. We’re once again excited for the opportunity to represent Edinburgh and our squad are relishing the challenge of facing a talented Lightning side on their home turf.”

An unchanged back-three sees Cardiff Met’s Nicole Marlow start at full-back alongside University of Edinburgh wingers Cieron Bell – top try-scorer for the capital club – and Nicole Flynn.

Thomson links up with fellow Scotland internationalist Emma Orr in midfield, while captain and stand-off Sarah Denholm (University of Edinburgh) continues in the number 10 jersey alongside Scotland scrum-half Caity Mattinson (Gloucester-Hartpury).

Hooker Millie Whitehouse (University of Edinburgh) packs down alongside props Fletcher and Molly Poolman (Watsonians), with Ferry and Nathasha Logan (University of Edinburgh) named in the second-row.

Watsonians’ Freya Walker continues at number 8 as openside flanker and vice-captain, Alex Stewart, and blindside flanker Merryn Gunderson (both Corstorphine Cougars) complete the pack.


Edinburgh Rugby team to face Gwalia Lightning at Cardiff Arms Park (Sunday 28 January, kick-off 1.30pm) – live on Rugby Pass TV.

15. Nicole Marlow (Cardiff Met)**

14. Nicole Flynn (University of Edinburgh)*
13. Emma Orr (Heriot’s Blues/Biggar RFC)*
12. Lisa Thomson (GB Sevens)
11. Cieron Bell (University of Edinburgh)*

10. Sarah Denholm (University of Edinburgh)* CAPTAIN
9. Caity Mattinson (Gloucester-Hartpury)

1. Poppy Fletcher (University of Edinburgh)*
2. Millie Whitehouse (University of Edinburgh)
3. Molly Poolman (Watsonians)*
4. Adelle Ferrie (Corstorphine Cougars)
5. Natasha Logan (University of Edinburgh)*
6. Merryn Gunderson (Corstorphine Cougars)
7. Alex Stewart (Corstorphine Cougars)* VICE-CAPTAIN
8. Freya Walker (Watsonians)*


16. Aila Ronald (University of Edinburgh)*
17. Panashe Muzambe (Exeter Chiefs)**
18. Katie Lindsay (Corstorphine Cougars)*
19. Sophie Murphy (Stirling County)*
20. Gemma Bell (Hartpury University)**
21. Leia Brebner-Holden (Gloucester Hartpury & Cheltenham Tigers)**
22. Briar McNamara (Watsonian FC)
23. Hannah Walker (University of Edinburgh)*

*Scottish Rugby Regional Training Centre supported players
**Transitional SQ Player

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