Ospreys name team to face Blues

The Ospreys team to face Cardiff Blues in the Magners League on Saturday 24th October 2009 at Cardiff City Stadium, kick off at 6.30pm, will be as follows..

15 Barry Davies
14 Tommy Bowe
13 Sonny Parker
12 Andrew Bishop
11 Shane Williams (Capt)
10 Dan Biggar
9 Rhodri Wells

1 Duncan Jones
2 Richard Hibbard
3 Cai Griffiths
4 Ian Gough
5 Alun-wyn Jones
6 Jerry Collins
7 Steve Tandy
8 Tom Smith

16 Ed Shervington
17 Paul James
18 Jonathan Thomas
19 Filo Tiatia
20 Ryan Jones
21 James Hook
22 Nikki Walker

Shane Williams is named Ospreys captain for the first time

Ospreys Coach Jonathan Humphreys commented:

“We are pleased with the results of the last four games, if not the overall performances during those matches. We will take a great deal of satisfaction from putting together four games without loss but we realise that there is still some way for us to before we can say we are the finished article. We’ve seen at times during each one of those games signs of what we are capable of, but we need now to start turning those 40-minute performances into 80 minutes if we are going to achieve what we want to as a group this season.

“In the last two games we’ve played the English champions and the French league leaders, and now we are facing a very formidable team in the shape of Cardiff Blues. I think it’s fair to say that over the last couple of years they’ve improved out of sight on and off the field. They’ve got facilities that are now probably among the best in Europe, if not the best, they have a very good, very competitive squad with more Lions than any region, so they really are looking good on and off the field. If you were looking a team to do well you’d have to put your money on the Blues. They took it to another level last season with their success in the two cup competitions, winning the EDF and just a penalty away from the Heineken Cup Final, and have shown in the last few weeks that once again they are a team to be reckoned with at European level.  Make no mistake, we are well aware of the size of the challenge that we face on Saturday evening.

“Our supporters will be excited about the prospect of the first local derby of the season. We know how much it means to them to get one over the neighbours, and these games bring excitement to the players and coaches as well. We want to put on the kind of performance on Saturday that will make our fans proud to be an Osprey, but we know that we will need to be on top of our game if we are to achieve that.”

The following players were not considered because of injury

Mike Phillips will today undergo surgery to repair ligament damage to the distal tib/fib joint suffered during last weekend’s game against Clermont Auvergne, following specialist tests yesterday that showed the full extent of the injury. As a result, he is looking at a four month lay-off

Jamie Nutbrown also came off during the Clermont Auvergne game, after suffering an injury to the posterior cruciate ligament, coupled with damage to the medial collateral ligament. Subsequently, he faces a period on the sidelines, that at the moment, we are predicting could keep him out for somewhere in the region of 10 weeks also.

Tom Isaacs has undergone reconstructive surgery after injuring his shoulder playing for Swansea RFC earlier this month and is unlikely to feature again this season

Ben Lewis is rehabbing following a minor operation to clean out some debris from his right knee and is looking at another three weeks on the sidelines

Lee Byrne underwent an operation to repair ligament damage in his right foot last weekend, and will remain in plaster for another 4/5 weeks

Lyndon Bateman underwent keyhole surgery to clear out his knee earlier this month, which it is hoped will alleviate symptoms that have been limiting his return to functional rehab

Conor McInerney has progressed to the functional stage of rehab and continues to target an early 2010 return

Rhys Webb is progressing very well after undergoing double surgery in the summer, on ACL and shoulder reconstructions, and is now looking at returning to action ahead of schedule in December

Richard Kelly is recovering well from a broken metatarsal and should return in around four weeks

Adam Jones is continuing his rehab and continues to target a Christmas return to action

Ian Evans is still around six weeks from a return to action after tearing his pec major tendon playing for Swansea recently

Forthcoming Fixtures

Sat 24th Oct – Cardiff Blues V Ospreys – Magners League – Cardiff City Stadium – 6.30pm
Fri 30th Oct - Ospreys V Glasgow - Magners League - Liberty Stadium - 7.05pm
Thurs 5th Nov – Ospreys V Northampton Saints – AW Cup - Liberty Stadium – 7.45pm
Sat 14th Nov – Bath V Ospreys – AW Cup – Recreation Ground – 1.00pm