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The contest for the festive derby title of best in the West comes to Parc y Scarlets on Boxing Day with excitement building for the start of the Christmas derbies.

Teams have been named by Scarlets and Ospreys for the big traditional derby with only a handful of seats left at the showcase fixture between the two rivals in the West.

This year’s festive battle will be hosted by Guinness PRO14 leaders Scarlets and with the Ospreys winning the age-old rivalry last season 19-9 at the Liberty Stadium in December 2016, the Scarlets will be looking forward to hosting their near neighbours at Parc y Scarlets this Christmas. With news of players swapping colours between these two neighbours from West Wales for next season the Scarlets battle with Ospreys will have plenty of added festive spice to tuck into. The Ospreys will be looking to use their big Champions Cup winning double to launch a resurgence in the Guinness PRO14 against the high-flying Scarlets who sit at the top of Conference B in the PRO14 on an impressive 40 points.

With some of the best Welsh international talent on show at the festive derbies on Boxing Day both teams promise to provide supporters with plenty of festive flair.


Scarlets head coach Wayne Pivac has named his side with four changes to the side that secured a bonus point victory over Benetton Rugby in the European Rugby Champions Cup last weekend.

Hadleigh Parkes comes back in to the starting line-up to partner Scott Williams with Paul Asquith moving to the replacements bench. Tadhg Beirne moves from the backrow to the second row making way for Aaron Shingler’s return following a foot injury.

Speaking ahead of the game Pivac said: “Regardless of how the Ospreys are playing up until this particular match we’ve got nothing but respect for them because of the quality that they’ve got in their squad.

“They work very hard, they’re a very proud club and they’ve got the history to back that up. We’re preparing for a strong Ospreys opposition regardless of the side they put out. We know that they’re a formidable side when they bring their ‘A’ game.

“It will be a big day, we know that, and they’ve hit a bit of form in recent weeks.”

Scarlets team to take on Ospreys at Parc y Scarlets, Tuesday 26th December kick-off 5.35pm; 15 Leigh Halfpenny, 14 Johnny Mcnicholl, 13 Scott Williams, 12 Hadleigh Parkes, 11 Steff Evans, 10 Dan Jones, 9 Gareth Davies, 1 Rob Evans, 2 Ken Owens ©, 3 Werner Kruger, 4 Tadhg Beirne, 5 David Bulbring, 6 Aaron Shingler, 7 James Davies, 8 John Barclay

Replacements; Ryan Elias, Wyn Jones, Simon Gardiner, Steven Cummins, Josh Macleod, Aled Davies, Rhys Patchell, Paul Asquith.

A limited number of tickets are still available for the game on Boxing Day. Please buy online at or call the ticket office on 01554 29 29 39. The ticket office will be open until 5pm today and 9am-12pm on Saturday 23rd December. We will be open from 9am on Boxing Day.


Ospreys Head Coach, Steve Tandy, has named an unchanged side from the team that won against Northampton Saints at the Liberty Stadium last Sunday.

He said: “Christmas rugby is all about derby fixtures against your big rivals and with three physical, keenly contested games in 12 days, everybody is really excited about the next couple of weeks.

“We’ve seen the best of the Ospreys in the Champions Cup this season but we have to forget about that competition now and focus firmly on improving our position in the Guinness PRO14. Scarlets and Dragons away then the Blues home at the start of 2018 is a tough schedule that will test us but we know that we’ve got to keep rising to the challenge.

“These games are always great occasions with big crowds, the kind of games that we all love as players, coaches and supporters. It’s important for us to use the momentum we’ve started building and the energy that comes with these derby matches to drive us on.

“For us, it’s not about local pride, or getting one over local rivals, but ensuring we get a run of performances under our belt that will make the supporters proud and allow us to put ourselves back in contention at the right end of the table.”

The Ospreys team to play the Scarlets at Parc y Scarlets on Tuesday 26th December 2017, KO 5.35pm, is as follows: 15 Dan Evans; 14 Ben John; 13 Kieron Fonotia; 12 Owen Watkin; 11 Jeff Hassler; 10 Sam Davies; 9 Tom Habberfield; 1 Nicky Smith; 2 Scott Baldwin; 3 Dmitri Arhip; 4 Bradley Davies; 5 Alun Wyn Jones (Capt); 6 Dan Lydiate; 7 Justin Tipuric; 8 Olly Cracknell

Replacements: 16 Scott Otten; 17 Paul James; 18 Ma’afu Fia; 19 Adam Beard; 20 Rob McCusker; 21 Rhys Webb; 22 Dan Biggar; 23 Ashley Beck

To help you get on top of the facts, here’s a few key details from Guinness PRO14 on the BIG derby in the West:


Overall Guinness PRO14 head to head record:
 Played 29, Scarlets won 10, Ospreys won 18 with 1 game drawn.

Did you know?

  • Scarlets 21-28 defeat against Toyota Cheetahs in Bloemfontein in round 10 ended their six game winning run in the Guinness PRO14 this season.
  • Scarlets have won their last fifteen matches at Parc y Scarlets in the PRO14 since Munster beat them there on the opening weekend of last season – only Cardiff Blues have a better home winning run by a Welsh region in the history of the Championship (seventeen wins 2006-2007).
  • Ospreys Rugby won both matches against Northampton with maximum points in the European Champions Cup but in the Guinness PRO14 their only victory since round 1 was 28-14 at home to Dragons on 27 October.
  • Ospreys have not won away from home in the Championship since a trip to Edinburgh in early March.
  • Scarlets have won their last two matches against Ospreys including one by the narrowest of margins at 
Liberty Stadium in round 6 this season.
  • Ospreys most recent victory at Parc y Scarlets was 27-26 on Boxing Day 2015.