Cardiff Blues have received a double fitness boost ahead of tomorrow’s Guinness PRO14 clash against Glasgow Warriors (7.35pm) with Jarrod Evans and Rey Lee-Lo cleared to start.
John Mulvihill has made a total of five changes for the Rodney Parade encounter against the Scottish outfit.
Three of those changes come in the pack with Kristian Dacey, who missed last weekend’s defeat to Leinster due to the birth of his second child, returning to captain the side. Brad Thyer joins Dacey in the front-row with Corey Domachowski rotated to the replacements.
Ben Murphy and Rory Thornton continue in the second-row while 20-year-old Gwilym Bradley, who made his regional debut last weekend, is handed a first start in the back-row.
Mulvihill has opted for the specialist open side in the place of Alun Lawrence, who drops to the bench, while James Ratti and Josh Turnbull continue at six and eight.
In the backs, Tomos Williams partners Jarrod Evans, who failed a late fitness test in Dublin while star centre Lee-Lo also returns.
The Samoan ace was knocked unconscious during a try-scoring performance against Ulster at the beginning of the month but has been passed fit following specialist consultation and the completion of return to play protocols.
Mulvihill said: “It is great to welcome three key players and leaders back to our starting line-up for a really important game against Glasgow Warriors.
“With Tomos and Jarrod combining at half-back and Rey returning in midfield, the back-line has a familiar and exciting look and we’re hoping to unleash more of our attacking game.
“It is a big opportunity for Gwilym, who has only been training with the senior group for a month, but we feel we need a specialist seven and have been impressed with him so far.
“It is going to be a massive test and Glasgow will be determined to secure a much-needed victory following a difficult start to the season.
“They are a quality side, who will threaten us all over the park, but if we can bring the same effort as last week and combine it with accuracy, discipline and a ruthless edge we can get back to winning ways ourselves.”
Glasgow have been victorious on the last eight occasions against Wales’ Capital Region but have triumphed on just one occasion this season. They currently sit fourth in Conference A having fallen to four consecutive defeats.
Meanwhile Cardiff Blues hold the same position in Conference B, albeit with nine more points, and have lost just one home game since switching matches to Rodney Parade.
There are two further changes among the replacements with Sam Moore recovering from injury and Mason Grady in line for his senior debut.
The 18-year-old, who impressed for Wales U20s last season, was handed a senior contract in the summer and has continued to demonstrate his potential.
Mulvihill added: “We are really excited to see what Mason can do at this level. He is big, fast, powerful and has a good skillset.
“He has impressed us all since coming into the group and has a huge amount of potential. It will be a proud moment for Mason and his family and he is just the latest youngster to debut following the likes of Gwilym, Iestyn Harris and Jamie Hill.”
Cardiff Blues: Matthew Morgan; Owen Lane, Rey Lee-Lo, Ben Thomas, Aled Summerhill; Jarrod Evans, Tomos Williams; Brad Thyer, Kristian Dacey (capt), Dmitri Arhip, Ben Murphy, Rory Thornton, James Ratti, Gwilym Bradley, Josh Turnbull.
Replacements: Ethan Lewis, Corey Domachowski, Keiron Assiratti, Alun Lawrence, Sam Moore, Jamie Hill, Mason Grady, Hallam Amos.