Edinburgh head coach Sean Everitt insists the selection of Ben Vellacott over Ali Price for the visit of Munster tomorrow is part of a long-term strategy to manage the duo.  

Price started Edinburgh’s last three games but drops to the bench as Vellacott returns in the only change to the team that beat Zebre last weekend.  

Everitt explained the rationale behind the switch.  

He said: “We’ve rotated our 9s throughout the season. We select our team in advance, not necessarily on the form that a player delivers in one game on a Saturday. But for us it’s about giving Ben a start at home, as well as part of our strategy.” 

Vellacott was outstanding off the bench in the victory over Zebre last weekend and Everitt has challenged the former Wasps man to bring that energy from the start against the defending champions.    

He added: “Sometimes players that have a good impact off the bench tend to stay on the bench - and sometimes you’re looking for that impact at the start of a game.  

Scotland Rugby News: Ben Vellacott celebrates scoring against Zebre last weekendBen Vellacott celebrates scoring against Zebre last weekend (Image: SNS)

“Ben has grown his game a lot. His kicking game has got better, and he’s actually been in really good form. 

“When Ali came back from the Six Nations break and with the birth of his baby, it was important for us to give Ali game time. Ali has now had three starts, and like I said we are going to rotate those 9s. 

“Ben has been in good form coming off the bench, and like I said we’re looking at him to bring that spark from the start of the game.”   

However, the Edinburgh head coach also revealed Emiliano Boffelli won’t play again this season. 

Boffelli was a late withdrawal from the team to play Sharks in Durban on March 30 with back spasms.

He did return to play 80 minutes in the win over Cardiff last month, but has since suffered a flare-up of the problem and will now see a specialist. 

Everitt hopes that by sorting out the long-running problem now, the Argentina international will be back for the start of next season.

He continued: "We are hoping that with the break we have now, and if he needs to have surgery and he has it now, then he’ll be raring to go at the start of next season. 

Scotland Rugby News: Emiliano Boffelli won't play again for Edinburgh this seasonEmiliano Boffelli won't play again for Edinburgh this season (Image: SNS)

“He’s been carrying this problem for three to four years now and I think it has got to the stage where it can’t be managed anymore, so it needs to be surgically repaired but we’ll leave that up to the specialist to determine the way forward from here.” 

Looking ahead to the visit of Munster, who have picked a side captained by Ireland lock Tadhg Beirne, but without the injured Peter O'Mahony, Everitt admitted it is a must-win game for his side to keep alive their ambition of reaching the play-offs.  

The Edinburgh boss added: “We know that we need to win to keep our destiny in our own hands, and that’s why it’s such an important game for us. 

"I said to the players during the week that it is great that we have a purpose, and our purpose is to get into the top eight. 

READ MORE: Pressure on Edinburgh can be a boost, says Grant Gilchrist

“There’s nothing worse than getting to the latter stages of the season and the season is over and you are trying to find emotional reasons why you need to win on the weekend. 

“We’ve grown as a team in our performances in certain areas, while there are certain areas we still need to work on.

"It is never going to be perfect in your first season here, but I believe that the guys have bought in, and are willing to put in an 80-minute performance tomorrow night.” 

Ben Healy has been an integral part of Everitt’s first season in the capital, and the Edinburgh coach said he has spoken to the former Munster fly-half about facing his former side this weekend.  

READ MORE: Edinburgh have what it takes to win URC, says Ben Healy

“We talked to him but haven’t gone into depth about what Munster do,” he added. 

“We’ve got a very efficient analysis department and all coaches do analysis. What we’ve seen is pretty much what Munster bring in week in, week out, performance-wise.  

Scotland Rugby News: Ben Healy will face his former sideBen Healy will face his former side (Image: SNS)

“For Ben it’s about him focusing on his game and not on what Munster does. There are certain areas of our game that we need to improve on and we don’t want to take our focus off of that.  

“For us to get a result we have to get our things right and we’ve not always done that for 80 minutes.” 

The teams

Edinburgh: Wes Goosen, Matt Currie, Mark Bennett, James Lang, Duhan van der Merwe, Ben Healy, Ben Vellacott (cc); Pierre Schoeman, Ewan Ashman, WP Nel, Sam Skinner, Grant Gilchrist (cc), Jamie Ritchie, Hamish Watson, Viliame Mata

Replacements: Dave Cherry, Boan Venter, Javan Sebastian, Marshall Sykes, Luke Crosbie, Ali Price, Cammy Scott, Chris Dean

Munster: Mike Haley; Calvin Nash, Antoine Frisch, Alex Nankivell, Shane Daly, Jack Crowley, Craig Casey; Jeremy Loughman, Niall Scannell, Oli Jager, Fineen Wycherley, Tadhg Beirne (c), Jack O’Donoghue, Alex Kendellen, Gavin Coombes.

Replacements: Eoghan Clarke, Mark Donnelly, John Ryan, RG Snyman, Tom Ahern, Conor Murray, Rory Scannell, Brian Gleeson.