The 2014/15 GUINNESS PRO12 season kicks off with two games on Friday night, Munster entertaining Edinburgh at Thomond Park and Benetton Treviso are the visitors to Swansea where they will face the Ospreys.
Both home sides finished in the top half of the table last season, Munster making it through to the play-offs, so will be looking to better that this year.
GUINNESS PRO12’s new broadcast partner, Sky Sports, kick off their coverage with a double header on Saturday; first up will be the Scarlets against Ulster from Parc y Scarlets at 2.40pm, followed by a repeat of last season’s final – only this time Glasgow Warriors will host Leinster at Scotstoun Stadium, kicking off at 5.15pm.
Both the Scarlets and Glasgow built up impressive home records during their last campaigns, and will want to continue that into the new season.
Connacht, on the other hand, will be looking to change their luck after racking up five successive defeats. Their visitors on Saturday, the Newport Gwent Dragons, were the last team to lose to the westerners back in March.
Round 1 concludes in Italy on Sunday when Zebre host Cardiff Blues. Zebre did the double over the Blues last season, the first time they had achieved that feat in PRO12 rugby, so will be looking to take the points from this game to get their campaign off to a positive start.
To watch video interviews with the provincial coaches and captains, please visit the IRFU’s official YouTube channel.
GUINNESS PRO12 – ROUND 1 FIXTURES:
Friday, September 5 –
MUNSTER v Edinburgh, Thomond Park, 7.35pm (live TG4/BBC ALBA)
Ospreys v Benetton Treviso, Liberty Stadium, 7.35pm (live BBC 2 Wales)
Saturday, September 6 –
Scarlets v ULSTER, Parc y Scarlets, 2.40pm (live Sky Sports 1 HD)
CONNACHT v Newport Gwent Dragons, the Sportsground, 5pm
Glasgow Warriors v LEINSTER, Scotstoun Stadium, 5.15pm (live Sky Sports 1 HD)
Sunday, September 7 –
Zebre v Cardiff Blues, Stadio XXV Aprile, 5pm local time (live S4C)