The Ospreys team to face Connacht in the Magners League on Friday 9th May at The Sports Ground, kick off at 6.30pm, will be as follows:-
15 Gareth Owen 14 Leigh Bevan 13 Mark Taylor 12 Jonathan Spratt 11 Kristian Phillips 10 Shaun Connor 9 Rhys Webb 8 Tom Smith 7 Steve Tandy 6 Hale T-Pole 5 Lyndon Bateman 4 Andy Lloyd 3 Cai Griffiths 2 Richard Hibbard 1 Paul James (c) Replacements: 16 Ed Shervington 17 Ryan Bevington 18 Mike Powell 19 Marty Holah 20 Martin Roberts 21 Dan Biggar 22 Ashley Beck Injury and squad availability news Shane Williams, Sonny Parker, Andrew Bishop, James Hook, Duncan Jones, Adam Jones, Huw Bennett, Ian Gough, Ian Evans, Alun-wyn Jones, Ryan Jones and Jonathan Thomas are all unavailable due to the WRU training camp in Ireland Seven players are not available for selection due to injury: Ben Lewis will undergo ACL reconstruction surgery to his right knee on Saturday and faces a six month lay-off Aled Brew suffered a hamstring strain at Newport Gwent Dragons on Friday Lee Byrne will undergo keyhole surgery on his knee to repair a cartilage defect this week Gavin Henson recently underwent keyhole surgery on his damaged ankle ligaments and now faces a 12-week lay-off. Mike Phillips recently underwent surgery to repair damage to his anterior cruciate and medial collateral ligaments and will be out of action until next season. Nikki Walker is recovering from a stress fracture of the fibia in the right leg. Andrew Millward has been ruled out for the season due to a cartilage problem in the right knee and will shortly undergo keyhole surgery Head Coach Lyn Jones commented as follows: "Once again there will be a youthful look to the side that takes to the field on Friday evening. It will be another opportunity for some of our youngsters to show what they are capable of and what they can bring to the Ospreys next season when we anticipate that some of them will be challenging some of the more established players. I think that everyone watching the Newport Gwent Dragons match on Tuesday will have been impressed by the ability, attitude and desire shown by these youngsters, and will be as excited as we are at what the future holds. After impressing off the bench on his debut, Kristian Phillips gets a first start, while on the bench there's another opportunity for Dan Biggar after his brief outing at the Millennium Stadium in the EDF Energy Cup semi-final, and another new name to most supporters in young prop Ryan Bevington from Bridgend RFC. The result didn't go our way on Tuesday night, an experienced Dragons side closed the game off in the last fifteen minutes but there was a lot to be pleased about and we'll be looking for more of the same on Friday. Sometimes, rugby is about more than just the result, and what we are getting in these final two fixtures is a glimpse of our future. As a regional coach, you have to work to several agendas at once, and as well as winning silverware, which we have achieved this season, we also have a responsibility to develop young talent and I think from the make-up of the 22 named, it is clear that at the Ospreys we are taking that responsibility very seriously. At the other end of the scale, we say farewell to a number of players after Friday night's game. One of those, Shaun Connor, goes out on a high, making his 100th Ospreys appearance in his final outing for us. I'm delighted for him that he has managed to hit that landmark figure, becoming only the second Osprey to do so. He's been a fantastic servant over the first five years of Ospreys rugby, and we wish him well for the future, as we do with all of the departing players." Speaking ahead of his 100th and final Ospreys appearance, Shaun Connor said: "I'm delighted and honoured to be able to reach a century for the Ospreys. When we started off with the region five years ago I never imagined for one moment that I would go on to achieve such a landmark. I've enjoyed every moment of my time with the Ospreys and I've been privileged to work with an excellent coaching team that have achieved a lot in the game. Having started to think that I might hit one hundred earlier in the season, the figure had begun to drift away from me and just a few weeks ago I was thinking that I was going to end up going agonisingly close but ultimately missing out. To achieve it, and to end my time at the Ospreys on a positive note gives me tremendous satisfaction, and another good memory of my time with the region."