Edinburgh coach: Play match not the occasion

Alan Solomons has warned his players not to expend nervous energy in the build up
Alan Solomons has warned his players not to expend nervous energy in the build up
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Coach Alan Solomons will tell his Edinburgh players to play the match and not the occasion in tonight’s historic European Challenge Cup final against Gloucester in London.

Edinburgh are the first Scottish team to contest a European final and Solomons is aware of the game’s huge significance, but stressed: “What’s important is that it is just another game. You have to be at the right pitch because if it’s overdone, you expend a lot of nervous energy which is not going to help you.

“You want to be wound up but not overwound, if you know what I’m saying. That comes from how you prepare during the week, and you just wrap that up on match day.”

Solomons has made three changes – one positional – to the team which overcame Zebre in last Friday’s Guinness PRO12 fixture. As expected Scotland No.8 David Denton, who is undergoing concussion protocols, has not recovered from his head injury.

Greig Tonks returns from his injury to take the full-back berth.

In the pack, captain Mike Coman switches to blindside from No.8 to accommodate explosive South African Cornell Du Preez who moves up from the bench, two weeks after returning from a serious ankle injury.

International flanker Hamish Watson returns from injury to the bench, with Stuart McInally providing additional back-row cover. Solomons added: “We’ve won nothing yet.

“We’ve done well and we’re the first Scottish team to be in a final and we’ll go hell for leather to win it.

“It’s a big thing to win any competition.”