GLASGOW WARRIORS: Kellock returns to make 150th league appearance
Captain Al Kellock returns to the Glasgow Warriors starting line-up for the game against Zebre at Stadio XXV Aprile in Parma tomorrow.
The second-row was stretchered off in the opening game against Cardiff Blues three weeks ago, but has recovered to take his place in the team.
Kellock will skipper the side in what will be his 150th league appearance.
Gregor Townsend has made nine personnel changes and one positional switch from the side that defeated Leinster at Scotstoun Stadium last Friday.
Sean Maitland makes his first appearance of the season, replacing Stuart Hogg at full-back, while Gabriel Ascarate makes his first competitive start for the club in place of Mark Bennett at outside centre.
Byron McGuigan and Henry Pyrgos are promoted from the bench in the absence of Sean Lamont and Chris Cusiter respectively.
In the forwards Gordon Reid comes in for Ryan Grant at loosehead and Scotland hooker Dougie Hall replaces Pat MacArthur.
Rob Harley moves from blindside flanker to second row and will combine with Kellock, while James Eddie takes Harley’s place and Josh Strauss comes in for Richie Vernon at number eight.
Niko Matawalu has been named on the bench tomorrow night. The Fijian scrum-half broke a metatarsal in his right foot during pre-season training and is set to feature for the first time this season.
After his man of the match performance against Leinster last week, 19-year-old Jonny Gray is also included amongst the substitutes.
Glasgow Warriors are top the RaboDirect PRO12 and are the only side with a 100 percent winning record this season.
Glasgow Warriors head coach Gregor Townsend said: “Beating Leinster last Friday was a fantastic result for the club, but our focus is now on backing that up with a win against Zebre tomorrow night.
“They are a very difficult team to play against and after winning their first game in the league last week they will be full of confidence.
“We have selected a strong squad and we’ve been pleased with the intensity in training this week.
“Our players are acutely aware of the improvement Zebre have made since they entered the competition last season and how we must limit any opportunities they have to attack.
“We’re delighted to have Al (Kellock) and Niko (Matawalu) back after their injuries and we also welcome back Sean Maitland after his involvement with the British & Irish Lions during the summer.”
Glasgow Warriors team to play Zebre, RaboDirect PRO12, Stadio XXV Aprile, Friday 27 September (kick-off 7.30pm local time):
15. Sean Maitland, 14. Tommy Seymour, 13. Gabriel Ascarate, 12. Alex Dunbar, 11. Byron McGuigan, 10. Ruaridh Jackson, 9. Henry Pyrgos, 1. Gordon Reid, 2. Dougie Hall, 3. Jon Welsh, 4. Rob Harley, 5. Al Kellock (Captain), 6. James Eddie, 7. Chris Fusaro, 8. Josh Strauss. Replacements: 16. Fraser Brown, 17. Jerry Yanuyanutawa, 18. Moray Low, 19. Jonny Gray, 20. Tyrone Holmes, 21. Richie Vernon, 22. Niko Matawalu, 23. Scott Wight
Not available due to injury: Mike Cusack (shoulder), Stuart Hogg (wrist), Peter Horne (knee), Peter Murchie (shoulder), Tom Ryder (head), DTH van der Merwe (illness) and Ryan Wilson (shoulder).