Worcester v Leicester Premiership Preview

Worcester Warriors have named Argentinian international Agustin Creevy in their starting line up to face Leicester Tigers at Sixways on Friday evening.

Creevy marked his Warriors debut with a try in October before sustaining a knee injury against Bath a fortnight later which has kept the hooker sidelined for the last three months.

But the giant forward will return against Leicester in the front-row as Director of Rugby Dean Ryan makes six changes to the side that faced Exeter Chiefs in the LV= Cup last weekend.

Creevy will be joined by Ofa Fainga’anuku and John Andress in the front-row, while James Percival and Mariano Galarza will feature at second-row.

Mike Williams keeps his place in the back-row alongside Sam Betty and captain Jonathan Thomas.

Jonny Arr returns at scrum-half and Paul Warwick replaces Ignacio Mieres as stand-off.

Alex Grove, who was on Scotland A duty against England Saxons last weekend, returns to the side in place of youngster Max Stelling at outside-centre.

David Lemi will start his first Premiership game since November with Josh Drauniniu on the opposite wing.

Leonardo Senatore, Paul Hodgson and Josh Matavesi are all named in the replacements.

Ryan said,eLeicester must be delighted that Toby Flood and Ben Youngs are available and that Anthony Allen is back.

“They’ve got a significant injury list but they have a significant squad. That’s what a good club is. It has layers of depth and a heritage of success.

“That’s what we are trying to build and Leicester are a great template for success over the years.

“People only go there that want to be successful and they are a great Premiership advert for English rugby.

“They’re always very physical and they’ve always got great set-piece. They’ve got some world-class players in that team.

“I’m desperate for this club to fight for its survival and therefore I’ve got to frame decisions around that.

“We’re going to have to beat a team like Leicester, Northampton or Harlequins if we are to get ourselves out of this position.

“That starts at home this Friday night and we will fight like mad to give ourselves every chance.”

Worcester Warriors have lost all twelve Aviva Premiership Rugby matches they have played this season, whilst their only victory in the competition since December 2012 was 29-23 at home to London Wasps on 1 March.

Leicester Tigers only defeat in their last five Premiership encounters came at Saracens on 21 December.

The Tigers have picked up just nine points in their five away games in the Premiership this season.

Worcester have recorded only two victories over Leicester in any competition; both in the Premiership at Sixways, in 2005 and 2008. Leicester have won their last ten encounters against the Warriors.

Meanwhile Leicester have named fit again international prop Logovi’i Mulipola in their line up after being on the sidelines since suffering a calf injury playing for Samoa against Ireland in the autumn but returns this week to join Marcos Ayerza and Rob Hawkins in the Tigers front row.

Ben Youngs and Ed Slater return from England’s Six Nations squad and go straight into the Leicester line-up which will be led by skipper Toby Flood.

Mathew Tait is among the senior players back in action after sitting out the LV= Cup weeks, while Blaine Scully and Vereniki Goneva are on the wings with Adam Thompstone ruled out after taking a knock in his England Saxons debut against Scotland ‘A’ last Friday.

Internationals Steve Mafi, Pablo Matera and Scott Hamilton are included among the replacements and there is a place for England Under-20s hooker Harry Thacker in an Aviva Premiership matchday squad for the first time.

Match : Worcester Warriors v Leicester Tigers
Date : Friday 7th February

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