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Plumtree set for Scarlets debut against Baa-Baas

Taine Plumtree

Plumtree set for Scarlets debut against Baa-Baas

Taine Plumtree may have been hoping to play for Wales at the World Cup, but the twice capped back row man will still be in the thick of some international this weekend when he makes his debut for new club Scarlets.

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Having recovered from injury the former New Zealand U20 cap, who was born in Swansea, will feature at blindside flanker in the Phil Bennett Memorial Match against the Barbarians (kick-off 2.30pm, Saturday 16 September).

It will be the third time the Barbarians have played in Llanelli. They met the town team at Stradey Park on 29 September 1972 as part of Llanelli RFC’s centenary celebrations, and hey brought a team boasting 12 internationals.

Llanelli won the game by five tries to three, with ‘Benny’ converting all five and adding a penalty. The Baa-Baas won on their first visit in 1965, themselves scoring five tries on that occasion.

Llanelli 33 – 17 Barbarians – 27 September 1972

Llanelli: R Davies; A Hill, R Bergiers, B Thomas, R Gravelle; P Bennett, S Williams; A Evans, R Thomas, A Crocker, D Quinnell, W.D Thomas, B Llewellyn, G Jenkins, H Jenkins

Barbarians: R.A Codd (Rosslyn Park); L.G Dick (Loughborough Colleges / Scotland), A.J Lewis (Ebbw Vale / Wales), G.W Evans (Coventry / England), V.L Jenkins (Bridgend): C. M. Telfer (Hawick / Scotland), I.G McCrae (Gordonians / Scotland); F.E Cotton (Loughborough Colleges / England), D.M Barry (Harlequins), M.A Burton (Gloucester / England), P.J Larter (Northampton / England), C.W Ralston (Richmond / England), D.J Morris (Neath / Wales), F.J Slattery (Blackrock College / Ireland), A.G Ripley (Rosslyn Park / England)

Llanelly 15 – 28 Barbarians – 2 November 1965
Llanelly: J. Protheroe; D. Rogers, M. Leach, B. Diment, G. Robins; B. John, G. Thomas; B. Gale, N. R Gale, G. Morgan, W. D Thomas, G. Roberts, M. Morgan, S. Gallagher, J. Leleu (captain)

Barbarians: M.C Cormack (Blackheath): A.W Hancock (Northampton / England), J. A. P Shackelton (London Scottish/ Scotland), J.C Walsh (UC Cork / Ireland), P. McGrath (UC Cork / lreland); D.H Chisholm (Melrose / Scotland), A.J Hastie (Melrose / Scotland); P.E Judd (Coventry / England), F.A.L Laidlaw (Melrose / Scotland), B.M Stoneman (Richmond), K.A Rowlands (Cardiff / Wales), P.K Stagg (Sale / Scotland), R.B Taylor (Northampton), D.G Perry (Bedford / England), J.P Fisher (London Scottish / Scotland)

Also making his debut for the home side will be another recently capped Welsh international, Ioan Lloyd. The former Bristol Bears starlet will don the famous No 10 jersey once adorned by Bennett as he tries to forge a future international half-back partnership with Kieran Hardy.

Hardy was another who just missed out on World Cup selection, along with wing Tom Rogers. Rogers forms a strong back three with Johnny McNichol at full back and Ryan Conbeer on the other wing.

Jonathan Davies is fit to start the season at centre, while former Wales and British & Irish Lions prop packs down in the front row. Former London Irish second row Ed Scragg and back-rower Teddy Leatherbarrow are set to make their debuts off the bench in a game that will raise money for the Phil Bennett Foundation, set-up in memory of the Wales great who died last year.

Australian scrum half Ryan Lonergan will lead a Baa-Baas team that is largely made up of players who are on stand-by for the Australian team at the World Cup. There are 12 full internationals from either squad.

The visitors have already beaten Northampton Saints (48-12) and Bristol Bears (52-26).

“The Barbarians have had two good wins and are going to be a big challenge for us. They have quality players who will have half an eye on a World Cup call,” said Scarlets head coach Dwayne Peel.

Scarlets: Johnny McNicholl; Tom Rogers, Ioan Nicholas, Jonathan Davies (captain), Ryan Conbeer; Ioan Lloyd, Kieran Hardy; Wyn Jones, Shaun Evans, Sam Wainwright, Jac Price, Morgan Jones, Taine Plumtree, Dan Davis, Ben Williams
Reps: Lewis Morgan, Kemsley Mathias, Steff Thomas, Harri O’Connor, Ed Scragg, Iwan Shenton, Teddy Leatherbarrow, Archie Hughes, Dan Jones, Eddie James, Tomi Lewis

Barbarians: Ryohey Yamanaka (Kobelco Steelers); Lachie Anderson (Rebels), Filipo Daugunu (Queensland Reds), Nick McCurran (Toshiba Brave), Dylan Pietsch (Waratahs); James O’Connor (Queensland Reds), 9. Ryan Lonergan (Brumbies, captain); Kenta Kobayashi (Suntory Sungoliath), Lachlan Lonergan (Brumbies), 3. Sam Talakai (Australia, Melborne Rebels), Josh Canham (Rebels), Uwe Helu (Kubota Spears), Lachlan Swinton (Waratahs), Faulua Makisi (Kubota Spears), Harry Wilson (Queensland Reds)
Reps: Shunta Nakamura (Sungoliath), Rob Evans (Haverfordwest), Harry Johnson-Holmes (Waratahs), Cadeyrn Neville (Brumbies), Aaron Shingler (Hendy), Seru Uru (Queensland Reds), 22. Kaito Shigeno (Sunwolves), James Tuttle (Melbourne Rebels), Tom Wright (Brumbies), Taichi Takahashi (Toyota Verblitz), Tom Lambert (Waratahs)

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