Davies returns from suspension
March 28, 2012
Bradley Davies was lucky to only see yellow for his dangerous tackle on Ireland's Donnacha Ryan © Getty Images
Wales lock Bradley Davies will make his return from a seven-week ban in Cardiff Blues' RaboDirect Pro12 clash with Glasgow Warriors on Friday night.
The 25-year-old missed the majority of Wales' triumphant Six Nations campaign after being suspended for a dangerous tackle on Ireland's Donnnacha Ryan in their opening match. But he is free to return as the Blues look to keep their dwindling play-off hopes alive with a victory over fourth-placed Glasgow at Firhill. Leigh Halfpenny and Jamie Roberts are also back for the Blues. The Warriors who have recorded wins over the Ospreys and Aironi in recent weeks after successive draws in the competition.
Leinster can all but seal at top-spot finish in the RaboDirect Pro12 standings at Thomond Park on Saturday with victory over closest rivals Munster. The league leaders are eight points clear of their Irish rivals and could go 13 points ahead with three games of the regular season remaining. Munster, though, will have their own motivations beyond the threat of losing at home to their rivals. The Ospreys lurk just three points behind second-placed Munster in the race for a home semi-final in the play-offs.
Ulster welcome back Rory Best, David Trimble and Stephen Ferris for their clash with Aironi at Ravenhill on Friday. The trio returns after their involvement in Ireland's Six Nations campaign while Lewis Stevenson earns a start at lock and Pedrie Wannenburg is back from illness for the Irish Province. Tito Tebaldi returns to scrum-half while wing Giovanbattista Venditti is back after scoring two tries for Italy during the Six Nations in a number of changes for Aironi.
The Scarlets have secured bonus-point wins in their last three matches and will look to maintain their hopes of an end-of-season play-off place against Edinburgh. George North, Jonathan Davies, Rhys Priestland and Matthew Rees all start for the Welsh Region. Edinburgh, who announced new deals for Nick De Luca and Ross Rennie during the week, welcome back nine front-line Scotland internationals, including Lee Jones who has recovered from a concussion he suffered during the Six Nations.
Wales internationals Dan Lydiate, Toby Faletau and Luke Charteris all start for the Dragons in their match with Connacht. Connacht coach Eric Elwood makes just one change following their victory over play-off hopefuls Musnter last weekend with Tongan international Fetu'u Vainikolo starting on the wing with Kyle Tonetti moving to his more familiar centre in place of the injured Eoin Griffin.
In Saturday's second match, the Ospreys host Treviso at the Liberty Stadium.
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