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RaboDirect PRO12: Round 15 Preview

RaboDirect PRO12: Round 15 Preview

With the completion of round 15 the regular season of the RaboDirect PRO12 will be two thirds of the way through, so all eyes will definitely be turning towards the play-off zone.

There are five teams within five points of each other around the cut-off fourth place, but the Cardiff Blues and Munster each have a game in hand over their opponents.

The Blues are in action on Friday night with the match against Ulster also switched to the Arms Park. Both teams sit just outside the play-off positions, just one point separating them, so a win for either side could prove to be a real season changer.

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Table toppers Leinster, who have now pulled 10 points clear of their nearest opponents, the Ospreys, will be looking to maintain their push for a home play-off spot when the Scarlets, who are by no means out of contention for a top four finish, are the visitors to the RDS.

The Ospreys themselves are also in action of Friday night. The Welsh region has never dipped below third in the table all season, but if they could maintain their second place spot it would secure home advantage for them in the play-offs.

The concluding three games all take place on Saturday, with Munster once more scheduled to play in Italy.

After the postponement of their game against Aironi last weekend, the Munstermen slipped to fourth place, so they will be anxious to avoid a repeat of last season’s defeat by their round 15 opponents, Benetton Treviso.

Munster’s third place spot was taken up by Glasgow Warriors, who will be hoping to consolidate their position with a victory over Connacht at the Sportsground.

The round wraps up in Wales with the Newport Gwent Dragons hosting Edinburgh at Rodney Parade, a ground where the visitors have not won since 2006.


Friday, February 17 –

Cardiff Blues v ULSTER, Cardiff Arms Park, 7.05pm (live BBC 2 Northern Ireland/BBC 2 Wales)

Ospreys v Aironi Rugby, Liberty Stadium, 7.30pm

LEINSTER v Scarlets, the RDS, 7.35pm (live TG4)

Saturday, February 18 –

Benetton Treviso v MUNSTER, Stadio di Monigo, 4.15pm local time/3.15pm Irish time (live RTÉ Two/RAI Sport 2)

CONNACHT v Glasgow Warriors, the Sportsground, 5.30pm (live TG4/BBC ALBA)

Newport Gwent Dragons v Edinburgh, Rodney Parade, 6.30pm (live S4C)