Pro14: Ospreys v Cardiff BluesVenue: Liberty Stadium, Swansea Date: Saturday, 6 January Kick-off: 15:15 GMTCoverage: Live on S4C; updates on the BBC Sport website and app
Wales scrum-half Rhys Webb is fit for Saturday’s Pro14 match against Cardiff Blues after a knock forced him off in their win against Dragons.
Back-row Dan Lydiate is unavailable , while Cory Allen and Paul James are also out.
Blues loose-head prop Gethin Jenkins is on the bench following a facial injury and Alex Cuthbert starts on the wing.
Wales international Cuthbert returned from injury off the bench in
Ospreys defence coach Brad Davis said there is “definitely a risk” of Lydiate missing the Six Nations and a worst-case scenario of an operation and 12 to 16 weeks out.
“We’ll know a lot more when he has had his scan and the medics can plan the best way forward for him,” he added.
Ospreys head coach Steve Tandy said: “Starting on Saturday, four of the next five Pro14 games are against the teams immediately ahead of us in the table, three of them at home, so clearly it’s a crucial phase for us in terms of performance, results, and our ability to climb up a few places towards Champions Cup and play-off spots.
“Everything is up for grabs, but we know that we need to find the performance and consistency levels that’ll allow us deliver the right results.”
However, they will do so without Ex-Blues player Allen, who has has a pectoral injury, while prop James has a shoulder problem.
Blues head coach Danny Wilson welcomed veteran prop Jenkins’ return, saying: “On the whole we are in a lot better state than we were a month ago.”
Looking ahead to the Ospreys game, Wilson said: “We will go there confident we can test them. I think they have been playing better over the last month – we have to deal with and match that.
“Last time we played them it was a great day and I know they’ll want to get some revenge for that so it’ll make for an exciting derby.”
Ospreys: Sam Davies; Dan Evans, Ashley Beck, Owen Watkin, Jeff Hassler; Dan Biggar, Rhys Webb; Nicky Smith, Scott Baldwin, Ma’afu Fia, Bradley Davies, Alun Wyn Jones (capt), Olly Cracknell, Justin Tipuric, Rob McCusker.
Scott Otten, Gareth Thomas, Dmitri Arhip, Adam Beard, Will Jones, Tom Habberfield, James Hook, Dafydd Howells.
Blues: Gareth Anscombe; Alex Cuthbert, Rey Lee-Lo, Willis Halaholo, Owen Lane; Jarrod Evans, Lloyd Williams; Rhys Gill, Kristian Dacey (capt), Anton Peikrishvili, Damian Welch, Josh Turnbull, Josh Navidi, Olly Robinson, Nick Williams.
Ethan Lewis, Gethin Jenkins, Dillon Lewis, George Earle, Ellis Jenkins, Tomos Williams, Garyn Smith, Matthew Morgan.
Referee: Nigel Owens (Wales)
Assistant referees: Dan Jones and Adam Jones (Both Wales)
TMO: Jon Mason (Wales)