Exeter vs Leicester Anglo Welsh LV Cup preview

Boris Stankovich and Dan Hipkiss make their first starting appearances of 2011 as Leicester Tigers head to Sandy Park, Exeter in the Anglo Welsh LV= Cup this weekend.

Loosehead prop Stankovich has made two appearances from the replacements bench since his return from a facial injury suffered in the Aviva Premiership win over Bath back in October, while Hipkiss has not played since the cup tie against the Ospreys in November.

Fifteen of the travelling squad have links with the Tigers Academy, while director of rugby Richard Cockerill also includes South African flanker Pieter Myburgh for his club debut.

The 25-year-old Myburgh has played for Western Province and gained Super 14 experience with the Stormers, and he joins Academy products Matt Everard and Dan Hemingway in the back row on Saturday.

Openside flanker Ben Woods is named among the replacements on his return from a wrist injury.

Tigers have 10 players on international duty with England and England Saxons, while Geordan Murphy (ankle), Tom Croft (shoulder), Geoff Parling (knee), Ben Pienaar (Achilles) and Lucas Amorosino (hernia) are ruled out by injury.

Rob Baxter is hopeful his Exeter Chiefs side can make it ‘third time lucky’ when they come head-to-head with the mighty Leicester Tigers.

Having faced the Tigers twice already this season in the Aviva Premiership – losing narrowly on both occasions – Baxter is confident lessons learned from those two games will ensure his team find the winning formula this time round.

“Leicester this weekend will be a good fixture for us,” declared the head coach. “We’re expecting a good crowd, it’s a tough test and with the squad we have picked, we are expecting a good game of rugby.

“For us, Saturday’s game is very much about us using the fixture to get a few guys up to speed again and some others who need game time. That, we believe is going to be very important running into our next block of Premiership games.

“The guys are aware that they are being looked at very closely and if you look at a few of them, the likes of Haydn Thomas, Gareth Steenson, Neil Clark, James Phillips, Hoani Tui and Bryan Rennie, it’s guys who have started a lot of rugby at times this season, but ones who we feel maybe need some more rugby because getting them more game time I think will put us in good stead as we enter into this next block of fixtures.”

With an LV= Cup encounter at Newcastle Falcons to follow next week, it’s the forthcoming league fixtures against Harlequins, Newcastle and Bath which will no doubt be uppermost in the minds of Baxter and his fellow coaches.

The Bookies have given Exeter Chiefs a 7 point start over Leicester Tigers in this match. 

Match : Exeter Chiefs vs Leicester Tigers
Date : Saturday 29 January 2011
Venue : Sandy Park
Kick Off : 3pm


Exeter Chiefs : 15 Mark Foster , 14 Andrew Higgins , 13 Bryan Rennie , 12 Jason Shoemark , 11 Nic Sestaret , 10 Gareth Steenson , 9 Haydn Thomas , 1 Ben Moon , 2 Neil Clark , 3 Hoani Tui , 4 Chad Slade , 5 Dave Gannon , 6 Dave Ewers , 7 Andy Miller , 8 James Phillips

16 Chris Whitehead , 17 Ruaidhri Murphy , 18 Ignacio Elosu , 19 Eoghan Grace , 20 Herbie Stupple , 21 Garrick Cowley , 22 Ignacio Mieres , 23 Paul McKenzie

Leicester Tigers :15 Joe Cobden , 14 Lee Robinson , 13 Dan Hipkiss , 12 Andy Forsyth , 11 Alex Lewington , 10 George Ford , 9 Sam Harrison , 1 Boris Stankovich (c) , 2 Rob Hawkins , 3 Peter Bucknall , 4 Calum Green , 5 Ed Slater , 6 Matt Everard , 7 Pieter Myburgh , 8 Dan Hemingway

16 Joe Duffey , 17 Camilo Parili-Ocampo , 18 Ryan Bower , 19 Dave Markham , 20 Ben Woods , 21 Luix Roussarie , 22 Stephen Macauley , 23 Ro

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