Delve to captain Gloucester in Anglo Welsh final

Gareth Delve will captain Gloucester as they take on Cardiff Blues in the final of the EDF Energy Cup at Twickenham on Saturday afternoon.

Cardiff born Delve will skipper the side in the absence of the injured Mike Tindall who isn’t risked after lengthy treatment this week.

Also absent is winger Iain Balshaw but the Cherry and White back line is boosted by the return of James Simpson-Daniel for his first appearance since the semi final victory over the Ospreys.

And returning for his first game since playing at Sixways against Worcester on March 22nd is England back row forward Luke Narraway.

Head Coach Dean Ryan, when previewing the fixture, acknowledged that the Blues will probably be seen as favourites but that the Gloucester squad is in good spirits.

“The atmosphere in the camp is good. We’ve had a good week and enjoyed probably our first weekend off which has been crucial.”

“We have been struggling with injuries recently. Every time we seem to get one back, we lose another one.”

“So, we’ve not had a huge amount of continuity in team selection and I think that week off has given us an extra couple of days to look at Cardiff and a couple of extra recovery days.”

“I don’t think that gives us an edge but just makes you feel a little bit better. Cardiff themselves have been going well, they beat Toulouse so they’ll be feeling pretty good about themselves.”

“I think that Cardiff will be seen as favourites given their form against us and their progression into the latter stages of Europe.”

“But we’ve been appearing in these types of finals for some time now and, apart from the European Challenge Cup, we’ve still to win a big one. It’s what we aspire to do, we have to convert one of these finals into a win and there’s no better opportunity than on Saturday.”

Gloucester Rugby:

Olly Morgan; Matthew Watkins, James Simpson-Daniel, Anthony Allen, Mark Foster; Ryan Lamb, Rory Lawson; Nick Wood, Olivier Azam, Greg Somerville; Alex Brown, Will James, Luke Narraway, Akapusi Qera, Gareth Delve (capt)

Replacements:Scott Lawson, Carlos Nieto, Marco Bortolami, Andrew Hazell, Gareth Cooper, Olly Barkley, Charlie Sharples.

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