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Crucial Magners League Game This Evening

24th April 2007 By Munster Rugby

It’s fourth versus fifth this evening in the Magners League when the Scarlets and Ospreys meet at Stradey Park but it’s fourth placed Ospreys who have most to lose as they chase leaders Leinster for the title.

It’s fourth versus fifth this evening in the Magners League when the Scarlets and Ospreys meet at Stradey Park but it’s fourth placed Ospreys who have most to lose as they chase leaders Leinster for the title.

As things stand the Lyn Jones coached Ospreys are on forty six points, nine behind Leinster but with two games in hand and Leinster set to visit the Liberty Stadium next Friday evening. So the very least the Ospreys require tonight is a win to kep their title hopes alive.

Now the Scarlets don’t lose too many games at Stradey – last time was 21-15 to Edinburgh in their first match of last season – and Phil Davies has gone for a very strong side given the disappointment his squad have just suffered. Mathematically they too could still win the title but they would need an awful lot of favours to do so and it’s more likely that they will see this game as a means of exorcising the demons after the defeat a the Walker Stadium.

Besides that Scarlets are bidding for a Magners League record of 16 matches unbeaten at home and the 50-24 bashing they were given in Swansea on Stephens’ Day may just help them ignore tired minds and bruised bodies.

The side issues include a fascinating match-up between the Grand Master, Stephen Jones and the Young Pretender James Hook and this area of play could have a big bearing on the outcome.

Scarlets: B Davies; M Jones, R King, G Evans, M Watkins; S Jones, D Peel; I Thomas, M Rees, C Dunlea, A Jones, S MacLeod, S Easterby (capt), D Jones, G Thomas. Replacements: D Manu, K Owens, I Afeaki, A Popham, L Davies, C Thomas, D Daniel.

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