Cardiff Blues v Edinburgh - RaboDirect PRO12 match preview

Last updated: 6th September 2012  

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Cardiff Blues welcome back a quartet of internationals for their homecoming match against Edinburgh at the Arms Park.

Leigh Halfpenny, Alex Cuthbert, Sam Warburton and Bradley Davies all come back into the side following the narrow away win over Connacht.

Dafydd Hewitt, Rhys Williams and Benoit Bourrust also start, with Dan Fish, Harry Robinson , Gareth Davies, Rory Watts-Jones, Robin Copeland, Andi Kyriacou and Thomas Davies making way.

Edinburgh have made four changes to their line-up for Friday's clash.

Scotland props Allan Jacobsen and Geoff Cross will replace John Yapp and WP Nel, while Roddy Grant comes in for the rested Ross Rennie on the openside flank.

Centre John Houston is the only change to the back division, with summer signing Ben Atiga ruled out after aggravating a hip injury against Munster.

On the bench, Fiji captain Netani Talei returns after a hamstring strain, while Sep Visser comes in for Houston.

Cardiff Blues: 15 Leigh Halfpenny, 14 Alex Cuthbert, 13 Gavin Evans, 12 Dafydd Hewitt, 11 Tom James, 10 Ceri Sweeney, 9 Lewis Jones, 8 Andries Pretorius (capt), 7 Sam Warburton, 6 Josh Navidi, 5 James Down, 4 Bradley Davies, 3 Benoit Bourrust, 2 Rhys Williams, 1 Taufa'ao Filise.
Replacements: 16 Marc Breeze, 17 Nathan Trevett, 18 Thomas Davies, 19 Lou Reed, 20 Luke Hamilton, 21 Lloyd Williams, 22 Rhys Patchell, 23 Thomas Williams.

Edinburgh: 15 Greig Tonks, 14 Lee Jones, 13 Nick De Luca, 12 John Houston, 11 Tim Visser, 10 Greig Laidlaw (capt), 9 Richie Rees, 8 Stuart McInally, 7 Roddy Grant, 6 David Denton, 5 Sean Cox, 4 Grant Gilchrist, 3 Geoff Cross, 2 Ross Ford, 1 Allan Jacobsen.
Replacements: 16 Andy Titterrell, 17 John Yapp, 18 Willem Nel, 19 Perry Parker, 20 Netani Talei, 21 Chris Leck, 22 Gregor Hunter, 23 Sep Visser.

Cardiff Blues director of rugby Phil Davies

"I've watched Edinburgh and they are a very committed side who like to play an expansive style of rugby and are very competitive throughout all areas of the game. They come off the back of a successful season last year which saw them reach the semi-final of the Heineken Cup. Therefore their confidence will be high.
"They have some outstanding players in their ranks with the likes of Visser, Denton and Laidlaw and of course they have recruited ex Blues players Richie Rees and John Yapp.
"We expect a pretty dogged performance off them but also an expansive style which we ourselves are endeavouring to produce."

Edinburgh head coach Michael Bradley

"This match presents a big challenge for us as Cardiff will be making a big play of being back at the Arms Park. The players and fans will be very excited, and possibly a bit anxious, to get a home win at the old ground."

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