Pro12: Ospreys v Zebre (Fri)

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Pro12: Ospreys v Zebre (Fri)

Post by LordDowlais on Fri 02 Sep 2016, 10:25 am

Pro12: Ospreys v Zebre

Date: Friday, 2 September Venue: Liberty Stadium, Swansea Kick-off: 19:35 BST
Coverage: Live on BBC Two Wales, BBC Radio Wales & BBC Sport website and BBC Sport app; highlights late online and Scrum V on Sunday


Wales flanker Justin Tipuric starts Ospreys' opening Pro12 game of 2016-17 after recovering from concussion.

Tipuric returned during pre-season games having not played since landing heavily at a line-out against Italy in the 2016 Six Nations.

Dan Biggar and Alun Wyn Jones are among the absent Wales internationals.

Lock Bradley Davies could could make his debut off the bench, where he is joined by fellow Wales international, scrum-half Rhys Webb.

Fly-half Biggar and lock Jones are among players dually contracted to the Welsh Rugby Union and Ospreys.

Wales back-rower James King and hooker Scott Baldwin are also absent, while Dan Lydiate's shoulder injury keeps him out.

The WRU and regions jointly decide on players' game time during a season.

The effects of post-season tours, such as the one Wales undertook to New Zealand in June, are taken into consideration when managing players' game time.

Ospreys finished eighth in 2015-16 after a disappointing campaign while Zebre were 11th, one place above fellow Italian side Treviso.

However, as Italy's top-ranked club, Zebre are in the 2016-17 European Champions Cup while Ospreys will be in the second-tier Challenge Cup.

"I couldn't give you an outright goal (for the season), it would be naive considering other sides have strengthened," said Ospreys backs coach Gruff Rees.

"Where we've got our own ambitions all we can be is as competitive as we possibly can.

"Sure, we're ambitious about both the competitions we're in, the group we've got won't settle for anything else.

"Last year we hope we can put down as blip."

Zebre have named 10 Italy internationals in their line-up.

Ospreys: Dan Evans; Jeff Hassler, Ashley Beck, Josh Matavesi; Eli Walker, Sam Davies, Tom Habberfield (capt); Nicky Smith, Sam Parry, Dmitri Arhip, Lloyd Ashley, Rory Thornton, Olly Cracknell, Justin Tipuric, Tyler Ardron.

Replacements: Hugh Gustafson, Paul James, Ma'afu Fia, Bradley Davies, Dan Baker, Rhys Webb, Ben John, Dafydd Howells.

Zebre: Kurt Baker; Lloyd Greeff, Giulio Bisegni, Tommaso Castello, Gabriele Di Giulio; Edoardo Padovani, Guglielmo Palazzani; Andrea Lovotti, Tommaso D'Apice, Pietro Ceccarelli, Federico Ruzza, George Biagi (capt), Jacopo Sarto, Maxime Mbanda, Andries Van Schalkwyk.

Replacements: Carlo Festuccia, Andrea De Marchi, Dario Chistolini, Valerio Bernabo, Giovanni Pettinelli, Fabio Semenzato, Carlo Canna, Tommaso Boni.

Referee: Andrew Brace (IRFU)

Assistant referees: Stuart Gaffikin (IRFU), Gareth Newman (WRU)

Citing commissioner: Aurwel Morgan (WRU)

TMO: Simon McDowell (IRFU)

LordDowlais

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Re: Pro12: Ospreys v Zebre (Fri)

Post by wayne on Fri 02 Sep 2016, 10:58 am

See Lord, this is what is wrong with our League, look at the Citing Commissioner for this game, I've mentioned him on different threads for well over a year, he has NO refereeing experience whatsoever, he was a former member of the WRU and by all accounts is close to 80 years old, he should be nowhere near this game, unless he's paying to watch from the stands like myself.

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Re: Pro12: Ospreys v Zebre (Fri)

Post by LordDowlais on Fri 02 Sep 2016, 11:00 am

Who put's these people in place ? Is it the WRU ?

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Re: Pro12: Ospreys v Zebre (Fri)

Post by wayne on Fri 02 Sep 2016, 2:06 pm

LordDowlais wrote:Who put's these people in place ? Is it the WRU ?
Don't know Lord, better to have a word with Morrison.

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Re: Pro12: Ospreys v Zebre (Fri)

Post by mikey_dragon on Fri 02 Sep 2016, 9:07 pm

Good start to the season. It's also good to see Beck playing well after his torrid time with injuries, from the little I saw that is. I didn't see much but had reservations about your starting front row. How did the scrums go?

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Re: Pro12: Ospreys v Zebre (Fri)

Post by True Raven on Fri 02 Sep 2016, 10:28 pm

Can't believe Zebre are playing in the champions cup this year. Awful, awful team

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Re: Pro12: Ospreys v Zebre (Fri)

Post by Pot Hale on Sat 03 Sep 2016, 12:14 am

LordDowlais wrote:Who put's these people in place ? Is it the WRU ?

The IRFU officials selected him apparently. There's a three man committee who decide the appointments for the games, and somehow the Scottish and Welsh guys flights were delayed into Dublin, so the IRFU guys went ahead and selected the officials for the next three weekends.
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Re: Pro12: Ospreys v Zebre (Fri)

Post by wayne on Sat 03 Sep 2016, 9:41 am

True Raven wrote:Can't believe Zebre are playing in the champions cup this year.  Awful, awful team
TR, I think they will improve very rapidly, apparently they've had a large influx of new players and coaches, I don't think they ever gave up last night, but by the end they were totally knackered. I was very impressed with the movement of our players and the urgency for them to get into position for the next move, it only broke down on a couple of occasions. Was you there? I was impressed with the way Brad Davis (defence coach) was running on to inform players of whatever needed doing in a different way.
Obviously it is going to be a lot harder next week, was talking to Dan Biggar in the shop yesterday and he said he'll be back for the Treviso game in a fortnight, but to be truthful will he improve the team much as Sam Davies is controlling the game very well, the only notable improvement will be the tackling down the 10 channel, which Sam does really need to improve.

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Re: Pro12: Ospreys v Zebre (Fri)

Post by maestegmafia on Sat 03 Sep 2016, 11:54 am

First games are too easy too judge too much, the standard by the Ospreys leads a lot to be desired. Good intention low skill level. Dropped balls missed tackles and lacking organisation defending.

These errors will be sorted quickly hopefully, I cant imagine we will play another team that poor this season

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Re: Pro12: Ospreys v Zebre (Fri)

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