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Dan Lydiate will make his first start for Ospreys when they face Scarlets at the Liberty Stadium tomorrow (5.15pm) in the first part of a massive West Wales festive derby double-header in front of what is expected to be the biggest regional crowd of the past two years.

James King moves from flanker into the second row to partner Ospreys captain Alun Wyn Jones, with lock Rynier Bernardo dropping to the bench.

There are no other changes to the Ospreys starting line-up that posted an excellent win against Ulster last weekend as they look to maintain their place at the top of the Guinness PRO12 table and claim the West Wales bragging rights.

Ospreys Head Coach commented: “This is the big one as far as the supporters are concerned and it’s fantastic that there’s going to be the biggest crowd for two years at a regional rugby ground, keeping the Christmas derby tradition well and truly alive.”

“This is a derby that really impacts on people’s everyday lives, with family, friends and workmates supporting opposite sides and there’ll be a great atmosphere at the Liberty on Saturday.”

“As far as we are concerned as a team, we have to take the passion created by a packed Liberty Stadium and channel it in the right direction. For us, it’s just the next game in a busy schedule and it’s crucial that we don’t allow the occasion to carry us away.”

Scarlets are set to welcome the return of a number of key frontline players for their short trip over the Lougher bridge.

The West Wales derby sees Scarlets go head-to-head with table-toppers Ospreys with the visitors keen to secure a victory to get their away form this season up and running and to keep the top-six qualification race alive.

A victory for the Scarlets at the Liberty Stadium will end a seven year itch for the region with the last victory over their regional neighbours coming at their Liberty in September 2007.

Scottish international John Barclay makes a return after suffering with a thigh haematoma that has kept him out of the side since the Guinness PRO12 defeat to Connacht in November. Barclay will lead the Scarlets at Liberty Stadium in the absence of injured captain Ken Owens (neck) and vice-captain Scott Williams (shoulder sprain).

Fullback Liam Williams has been cleared fit for duty after suffering a sprained ankle in the region’s emphatic victory over Ulster Rugby in the European Rugby Champions Cup a fortnight ago, an injury that kept him out of action for the PRO12 clash against Cardiff Blues last weekend.

Former Auckland Rugby captain Hadleigh Parkes makes his first start for the region as he links up in the centre with fellow Kiwi Regan King, who made his 150th regional appearance in last weekend’s derby against Cardiff Blues.

Scrum half Aled Davies will make his 50th appearance for the region and will face in-form international scrum half Rhys Webb.

In the pack Jake Ball and George Earle link up in the second row with Aaron Shingler returning to fitness after an illness kept him out of last weekend’s clash.

Ospreys: Dan Evans, Hanno Dirksen, Ashley Beck, Josh Matavesi, Eli Walker, Dan Biggar, Rhys Webb; Marc Thomas, Scott Baldwin, Dmitri Arhip, James King, Alun Wyn Jones (captain), Dan Lydiate, Justin Tipuric, Tyler Ardron.

Replacements: Sam Parry, Gareth Thomas, Daniel Suter, Rynier Bernardo, Sam Lewis, Martin Roberts, Sam Davies, Aisea Natoga.

Scarlets: Liam Williams, Harry Robinson, Regan King, Hadleigh Parkes, Kristian Phillips, Rhys Priestland, Aled Davies; Rob Evans, Emyr Phillips, Samson Lee, Jake Ball, George Earle, Aaron Shingler, John Barclay (captain), Rory Pitman.

Replacements: Kirby Myhill, Wyn Jones, Rhodri Jones, Lewis Rawlins, Will Boyde, Rhodri Williams, Steven Shingler, Steffan Hughes.