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The second of the big Welsh derbies this weekend will see current PRO14 Champions Scarlets head across the Loughor Bridge on Saturday evening (7th Oct) to their closest rivals the Ospreys at the Liberty Stadium.

The two teams Guinness PRO14 head-to-head record in 28 games gives the Ospreys the edge with 18 won over the Scarlets 9 and one game drawn.

The Ospreys will be looking to secure an all-important win at home in front of a busy Liberty Staidum crowd for the first of the West Wales derbies of the season but face a strong and buoyant Scarlets side with only one defeat in their last 12 Guinness PRO14 fixtures.  However, Scarlets only defeat to a fellow Welsh pro team in the Championship since April 2016 was on their most recent visit to Liberty Stadium in December 2016.

The last six meetings between the two sides have been evenly split with three wins apiece. Scarlets have won just twice before at Liberty Stadium, in September 2007 and March 2016.


Head Coach Steve Tandy says hosting the favourites and Conference B leaders will a tough contest but one his team are looking forward to.

He said: “Derby matches are games that get everybody excited and Ospreys v Scarlets is up there at any time as a fixture you want to be involved in.

“The form book is pretty clear. We’ve got the champions and Conference B leaders coming to the Liberty Stadium and we know that nobody outside of our environment will be predicting a home win. The Scarlets will be pretty clear favourites and we’ll be the underdogs but we have to ignore that and look at ourselves and where we need to improve on recent weeks.

“It’s a big occasion with a big crowd and, like any derby match, will be fast and physical. What has happened in previous games won’t count, it’s all going to be about what happens on the night. We know that we have to start well, build momentum and build our game by playing in the right areas and making the right decisions. The Scarlets have shown, last season and this, that if you make mistakes they will punish you from anywhere on the field so we have to be accurate or we’ll pay the price.

“With a big crowd we need the Ospreys support to get behind us and really help push the boys on in what will be a tough contest, one that we are really looking forward to.”

Wales, Lions & Ospreys fly-half Dan Biggar makes his 150th appearance in the competition.

The Ospreys team to play the Scarlets at the Liberty Stadium on Saturday 7th October 2017, KO 7.35pm: 15 Dan Evans; 14 Cory Allen; 13 Kieron Fonotia; 12 James Hook; 11 Jeff Hassler; 10 Dan Biggar; 9 Rhys Webb; 1 Nicky Smith; 2 Scott Otten; 3 Ma’afu Fia; 4 Bradley Davies; 5 Alun Wyn Jones (Capt); 6 Dan Lydiate; 7 Olly Cracknell; 8 James King

REPLACEMENTS; 16 Sam Parry; 17 Paul James; 18 Dmitri Arhip; 19 Lloyd Ashley; 20 Dan Baker; 21 Tom Habberfield; 22 Sam Davies; 23 Owen Watkin


Head Coach Wayne Pivac has made six changes to the side that secured a bonus point victory over Connacht at Parc y Scarlets last weekend.

Two changes in the backline see Hadleigh Parkes and Gareth Davies replace Scott Williams and Aled Davies whilst there are four changes to the pack.

Rob Evans will miss the big West Wales derby clash as he recovers from last weekend’s concussion with fellow international prop Wyn Jones stepping into the breach. Samson Lee returns to partner his fellow internationals in the front row with Ken Owens leading the side out at the Liberty.

Lewis Rawlins gets his first start of the season after coming on as a replacement against Connacht last week and will partner Jake Ball in the second row.

With John Barclay unavailable due to injury Tadhg Beirne packs down at number 8 for the first time in Scarlets colours.

Scarlets Head Coach Wayne Pivac said; “They’ll be a dangerous opposition, they always are at the Liberty regardless of their position on the points table and their form leading into it. Last year we fancied ourselves going out there but we were beaten across the park that day. You don’t have to go back too far to be reminded of how dangerous they can be.

“They’ve got everything to gain and nothing to lose which makes them a dangerous opponent from my perspective. I just look across their teamsheet at what could be facing us and we have the utmost respect for it and the utmost respect for their coaching group.

“I think they’ll be working very hard to keep improving their game. It took us a long time when we were adjusting our game to get it to where it ended up. What we do know is that we’re going to be in for a physical encounter against a team with their backs to the wall.

“Our focus this week is improving on where we need to improve from last week. We’ve got to make sure we get our house in order. We’re doing some good things but last year we weren’t allowed to play against them, they did a good job on us, and we’re mindful of that.”

Scarlets team to take on Ospreys; 15 Leigh Halfpenny, 14 Johnny Mcnicholl, 13 Jonathan Davies, 12 Hadleigh Parkes, 11 Steff Evans, 10 Rhys Patchell, 9 Gareth Davies, 1 Wyn Jones, 2 Ken Owens ©, 3 Samson Lee, 4 Jake Ball, 5 Lewis Rawlins, 6 Aaron Shingler, 7 Will Boyde, 8 Tadhg Beirne

Replacements; Ryan Elias, Dylan Evans, Werner Kruger, David Bulbring, Josh Macleod, Aled Davies, Paul Asquith, Scott Williams