Rhys Priestland returns to Scarlets side for Leinster clash
RHYS Priestland will return to the Scarlets’ starting line-up for Friday’s RaboDirect Pro12 season opener against reigning champions Leinster in Llanelli.
The Wales fly-half has not completed a full 80 minutes since December 2012 following an Achilles injury, but he played in the second half of last weekend's friendly defeat to Gloucester.
Steven Shingler, who rejoined the Scarlets from London Irish this summer, is named at inside centre.
Although Jonathan Davies is still being rested following his exploits with the British & Irish Lions, the Scarlets still have a number of Welsh internationals at their disposal.
Liam Williams and Scott Williams are included on the wing and at inside centre, while Ken Owens, Aaron Shingler, Josh Turnbull and captain Rob McCusker are the capped players in the pack.
Leinster are also without their Lions, but they have named a strong side which includes Irish Test stars such as Gordon D’Arcy, Luke Fitzgerald and Devin Toner.
Scarlets: G. Owen; L. Williams, S. Williams, S. Shingler, K. Phillips; R. Priestland, G. Davies; P. John, K. Owens, S. Lee, G. Earle, J. Snyman, A. Shingler, R. McCusker (capt), J. Turnbull. Reps: E. Phillips, R. Evans, J. Adriaanse, J. Ball, C. Price, R. Williams, A. Warren, J. Williams.
Leinster: D. Kearney; D. Fanning, F. McFadden, G. D’Arcy, L. Fitzgerald; J. Gopperth, E. Reddan; J. McGrath, S. Cronin, M. Moore, T. Denton, D. Toner, R. Ruddock, J. Murphy, S. Jennings (capt). Reps: A. Dundon, J. O’Connell, M. Ross, M. McCarthy, D. Ryan, I. Boss, N. Reid, B. Macken.