Rugby Union Today: Short side and leading lights – –

Another busy day in the rugby union game as we look ahead to this weekend’s matches in the Premiership and PRO14, and delve into who will shine in the Six Nations.

What’s on the site

The Premiership returns this weekend and we discuss the main stories heading into the action in ‘The short side’, including the big game as Bristol and Bath go head-to-head, and the battle between brothers Jasper and Cobus Wiese when Leicester take on Sale.

Former England Tom Youngs will make his 200th appearance for the Tigers and we have previewed that encounter, as well as the West Country derby where Chris Vui returns from injury for the Bears.

Meanwhile, we continue the build-up to the Six Nations with this feature, ‘Five possible leading lights in the Six Nations’, which looks at some of the players who are likely to shine in the upcoming tournament.

What’s in the news

There was once again plenty of action on the transfer front with Tomas Lavanini’s move from Leicester Tigers to Clermont Auvergne the headline. The Argentina lock signed for the Tigers in 2019 but will now head to the Top 14 for the 2021/22 season.

Meanwhile, the Dragons have also added international quality to their ranks by bringing in Wales lock Will Rowlands. The 29-year-old has impressed for Wasps over the past few years and was rewarded for his club form by making his Welsh debut last year.

To complete the contract news, Connacht have kept hold of their impressive head coach Andy Friend, with the Australian agreeing a two-year contract extension at the Galway-based outfit.

What’s on social media

An imposing second-row combination:

What’s on TV

The Premiership returns and all the matches will be shown on BT Sport. It starts on Friday as Bristol and Bath clash in the round’s standout meeting.

There are also two rearranged PRO14 encounters on Premier Sports as Benetton host Munster and champions Leinster visit the Scarlets this Saturday.

Finally, it is the Currie Cup showpiece event this weekend as the Blue Bulls take on the Sharks and that contest will be broadcast live on Sky Sports.

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