Premiership | Exeter Chiefs v Leicester Tigers line ups, stats and more

Premiership | Exeter Chiefs v Leicester Tigers line ups, stats and more

The third fixture of Round 14 will see Exeter play host to Leicester at Sandy Park.

 


Exeter find themselves perched atop the overall log, having won 9 of their 13 outings, while Leicester are struggling somewhat in 11th spot, only emerging victorious in 4 of their 13 matches.

 

The teams last met on 21 December at Welford Road where Exeter came away with the win, 31-22, in a match which was, until the final stages, very competitive.


The hiatus was not kind to Leicester after a number of high-ranking players turned their backs on the club after pay-cut disputes (among them, England centre Manu Tuilagi) which has left the side looking quite different. The Tigers will thus be eager to get their second chapter of the season off to a good start in the face of the recent adversity.


 

Exeter, by comparison, came away from the break relatively unscathed and currently enjoy a comfortable five-point cushion at the top of the table, a good start will be just as important to them as they seek to maintain their lead.

 

Team News:

 

Exeter Chiefs

Tomorrow, Rob Baxter’s squad return to competitive action at Sandy Park (2pm) looking to pick up from where they left off back in early March. On that occasion, Westcountry rivals Bath were brushed aside by a powerful display from the ‘Men in Black’.

 

The 57-20 victory underlined the class of the Chiefs, who this weekend will now brace themselves for the threat of Leicester Tigers. Under the guidance of new head coach, Steve Borthwick, it will be interesting to see what changes the former England forwards coach will have made since taking charge at Welford Road.

 

For the first return to action, Baxter has assembled a powerful array of proven Chiefs talent. Of all the newcomers to arrive, only Scottish international Jonny Gray is afforded a starting role. He will debut in the second-row alongside Jonny Hill, while fellow newcomer and compatriot, Sam Hidalgo-Clyne, is named amongst the replacements.

 

Elsewhere, the line-up has a familiar feel with England duo Ollie Devoto and Henry Slade in the midfield, Scottish captain Stuart Hogg at full-back, while Joe Simmonds skippers the side from fly-half. In the pack, it’s an all-England front-row of Alec Hepburn, Luke Cowan-Dickie and Harry Williams, whilst Sam Simmonds’ guile at No.8 is perfectly complemented with the African might of Dave Ewers and Jannes Kirsten.

 

On the bench, there is the welcome sight of Tomas Francis back in action. The Welsh prop has not played since severely damaging his shoulder in Wales’ World Cup defeat to South Africa back in October of last year.

 

Tomorrow’s game is live on BT Sport and Channel 5 and supporters are kindly reminded to stay away from Sandy Park as the game will be played behind closed doors.

 

15 Stuart Hogg

14 Tom O’Flaherty

13 Henry Slade

12 Ollie Devoto

11 Olly Woodburn

10 Joe Simmonds (capt)

9 Jack Maunder

1 Alec Hepburn

2 Luke Cowan-Dickie

3 Harry Williams

4 Jonny Gray

5 Jonny Hill

6 Dave Ewers

7 Jannes Kirsten

8 Sam Simmonds

 

16 Jack Yeandle

17 Ben Moon

18 Tomas Francis

19 Sam Skinner

20 Don Armand

21 Sam Hidalgo-Clyne

22 Gareth Steenson

23 Ian Whitten

 

Leicester Tigers

Steve Borthwick has included four of the club’s recent additions in his debut Leicester Tigers matchday squad to face Exeter Chiefs at Sandy Park in Round 14 of the 2019/20 Premiership season on Saturday. The Tigers head coach has named an all-international front row of Ellis Genge, Tom Youngs and Dan Cole with captain Youngs making his 150th starting appearance for the club.

 

In the second row, Argentina international Tomás Lavanini is partnered by Calum Green, with Harry Wells included at blindside flanker. Tommy Reffell, who recently re-signed with the club, starts at openside and Jordan Taufua completes the pack at No8. England internationals Ben Youngs and George Ford are at half-back, with fly-half Ford named vice-captain for the trip to Sandy Park.

 

Scotland international Matt Scott makes his Tigers debut after his move from Edinburgh and is partnered in the midfield by South Africa international Jaco Taute. David Williams, on loan from Championship club Nottingham Rugby, is included on the wing and will make his senior debut for the club. The 24-year-old graduated from the Tigers Academy in 2014 and has previously represented Leicester in the ‘A’ League and Premiership Sevens.

 

Fellow Academy graduates Jordan Olowofela and George Worth make up the back three. New recruits Luke Wallace and Zack Henry are in line for their debuts after being named among the replacements, while 20-year-old back-rower Thom Smith could make his Premiership debut after two previous appearances in the Cup.

 

Internationals Jake Kerr and Nephi Leatigaga are joined on the bench by Joe Heyes as front-row replacements, with Hanro Liebenberg and Ben White also included. 

 

Speaking ahead of the trip to Exeter, Borthwick said: “Everybody is excited by this opportunity to get back on the field tomorrow.

 

“They’re a very, very good side and have been a contender at the top of the table for a long time now.

 

“We have got to go there and put out the best performance we possibly can.

 

 

 

Line ups

15 George Worth

14 David Williams

13 Jaco Taute

12 Matt Scott

11 Jordan Olowofela

10 George Ford (vc)

9 Ben Youngs

1 Ellis Genge

2 Tom Youngs (c)

3 Dan Cole

4 Tomás Lavanini

5 Calum Green

6 Harry Wells

7 Tommy Reffell

8 Jordan Taufua

 

Replacements

16 Jake Kerr

17 Nephi Leatigaga

18 Joe Heyes

19 Hanro Liebenberg

20 Luke Wallace

21 Thom Smith

22 Ben White

23 Zack Henry

 

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