Semi-final bound Edinburgh have made ten changes to their side to take on Scottish rivals Glasgow in the second derby encounter inside a week between the teams at Murrayfield. Conference B leaders Edinburgh secured a home semi-final with last Saturday’s 30-15 win over the Warriors and they have elected to go with a much-changed XV with a view to the following weekend’s last-four fixture.   

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Scotland pair Darcy Graham and Magnus Bradbury both start after returning from injury, while Simon Berghan and Nick Haining get the nod in the forward pack after featuring from the bench last weekend. Summer signing Nathan Chamberlain makes his first start for Edinburgh at stand-off and is partnered at half-back by scrum-half Charlie Shiel, a try-scorer in last Saturday’s win over Glasgow.

Loosehead prop Pierre Schoeman and hooker Mike Willemse both come into the front row, while lock Jamie Hodgson is named in the second row. The final alteration to the starting line-up sees James Johnstone selected in midfield, with the outside centre making his 50th appearance for the club.

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Ahead of the Friday night derby, the first professional rugby fixture in the UK to host a crowd since the sport’s restart following the Covid-19 pandemic lockdown, coach Richard Cockerill said: “We’ve given some of our younger guys an opportunity.

“We’ve got a good squad with plenty of depth, so it’s a great chance to blood some new players and give them some experience playing in a derby match. We’re also looking after our squad and some of those key guys who are important to the way we play.

“We want as full and as fit a complement of players as we can going into the semi-final. The team we have selected is definitely exciting and we want to keep the momentum going, so we’re looking forward to facing Glasgow in another important fixture,” added Cockerill, who has now extended his Edinburgh deal through to 2023.

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For Glasgow, Fraser Brown will become the latest player to become a club centurion as he will make his 100th appearance. The club co-captain is named in a starting XV showing three changes from last weekend’s loss.

The only change to the pack sees Tom Gordon promoted from the bench to start at openside, George Horne is handed the No9 jersey after also coming off the bench while Stafford McDowall comes into the side at No12.

EDINBURGH: 15. Blair Kinghorn; 14. Darcy Graham, 13. James Johnstone, 12. Chris Dean (capt), 11. Duhan van der Merwe; 10. Nathan Chamberlain, 9. Charlie Shiel; 1. Pierre Schoeman, 2. Mike Willemse, 3. Simon Berghan, 4. Nick Haining, 5. Jamie Hodgson, 6. Magnus Bradbury, 7. Hamish Watson, 8. Viliame Mata. Reps: 16. Stuart McInally, 17. Rory Sutherland, 18. WP Nel, 19. Marshall Sykes, 20. Luke Crosbie, 21. Roan Frostwick, 22. Jaco van der Walt, 23. Matt Gordon. 

GLASGOW: 15. Huw Jones; 14. Tommy Seymour, 13. Nick Grigg, 12. Stafford McDowall, 11. Ratu Tagive; 10. Adam Hastings, 9. George Horne; 1. Oli Kebble, 2. Fraser Brown (capt), 3. Zander Fagerson, 4. Richie Gray, 5. Scott Cummings, 6. Ryan Wilson, 7. Tom Gordon, 8. Matt Fagerson. Reps: 16. George Turner, 17. Charlie Capps, 18. Enrique Pieretto, 19. Rob Harley, 20. Chris Fusaro, 21. Ali Price, 22. Pete Horne, 23. Robbie Nairn.

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