Challenge Cup teams: Thursday

Date published: December 14 2016

There are two Round Four Challenge Cup matches on Thursday with Bath and Stade Français hosting Cardiff Blues and Edinburgh respectively.

Bath v Cardiff Blues

Form: Cardiff Blues head into this clash at the top of the Pool Four table after winning all three their previous matches which includes last weekend's 28-3 demolition of Bath at Cardiff Arms Park. Prior to that, they registered victories over Bristol and Pau. The Blues are currently five points ahead of second-placed Bath in the standings. The English outfit started their campaign with a narrow away victory over Pau and put Bristol to the sword in their Round Two clash before losing to Cardiff last weekend.

The teams:

Bath: 15 Tom Homer, 14 Jack Wilson, 13 Jonathan Joseph, 12 Ben Tapuai, 11 Aled Brew, 10 George Ford (cc), 9 Kahn Fotuali’i, 8 Taulupe Faletau, 7 Francois Louw, 6 Tom Ellis, 5 Dave Attwood, 4 Charlie Ewels (cc), 3 Max Lahiff, 2 Ross Batty, 1 Nick Auterac
Replacements: 16 Michael van Vuuren, 17 Beno Obano, 18 Shaun Knight, 19 Elliott Stooke, 20 Zach Mercer, 21 Darren Allinson, 22 Adam Hastings, 23 Max Clark

Cardiff Blues: 15 Matthew Morgan, 14 Cory Allen, 13 Rey Lee-Lo, 12 Willis Halaholo, 11 Blaine Scully, 10 Steven Shingler, 9 Lloyd Williams, 8 Josh Navidi, 7 Sam Warburton (c), 6 Macauley Cook, 5 James Down, 4 George Earle, 3 Taufa'ao Filise, 2 Kirby Myhill, 1 Rhys Gill
Replacements: 16 Matthew Rees, 17 Brad Thyer, 18 Scott Andrews, 19 Jarrad Hoeata, 20 Seb Davies, 21 Ellis Jenkins, 22 Tomos Williams, 23 Nicky Robinson

Date: Thursday, December 15
Venue: Recreation Ground
Kick-off: 19:45 GMT
Referee: Alexandre Ruiz (France)
Assistant Referees: Laurent Cardona (France), Jonathan Gasnier (France)
TMO: Arnaud Blondel (France)

Stade Français v Edinburgh

Form: The Scottish side are sitting pretty with three wins from three – two of them with bonus points – ahead of their trip to the French capital. A 28-23 victory over Stade last weekend was another step in the right direction for Duncan Hodge's side and ahead of the return fixture, the former Scotland fly-half has made five changes to his side. Stade must win on home soil to have hope of qualifying for the latter stages of the tournament. They suffered a 43-21 loss to Harlequins before beating Timisoara Saracens 27-0 and then lost to Edinburgh last weekend.

The teams:

Stade Français: 15 Hugo Bonneval, 14 Jérémy Sinzelle, 13 Geoffrey Doumayrou, 12 Jonathan Danty, 11 Josaia Raisuqe, 10 Jules Plisson, 9 Clement Daguin, 8 Sergio Parisse, 7 Sekou Macalou, 6 Jonathan Ross, 5 Pascal Papé, 4 Hugh Pyle, 3 Rabah Slimani, 2 Remi Bonfils, 1 Emmanuel Felsina 
Replacements: 16 Craig Burden, 17 Zurabi Zhvania, 18 Giorgi Melikidze, 19 Mathieu De Giovanni, 20 Sylvain Nicolas, 21 Arthur Coville, 22 Morné Steyn, 23 Julien Arias

Edinburgh: 15 Blair Kinghorn, 14 Damien Hoyland, 13 Michael Allen, 12 Chris Dean, 11 Tom Brown, 10 Jason Tovey 9 Sam Hidalgo-Clyne, 8 Nasi Manu, 7 Hamish Watson, 6 Cornell Du Preez, 5 Ben Toolis, 4 Fraser McKenzie, 3 Simon Berghan, 2 Ross Ford, 1 Alasdair Dickinson 
Replacements: 16 Neil Cochrane, 17 Allan Dell, 18 Murray McCallum, 19 Lewis Carmichael, 20 Viliame Mata, 21 Sean Kennedy, 22 Duncan Weir, 23 Glenn Bryce

Date: Thursday, December 15
Venue: Stade Jean Bouin
Kick-off: 20:45 local (19:45 GMT)
Referee: Dudley Phillips (Ireland)
Assistant Referees: Sean Gallagher (Ireland), Helen O’Reilly (Ireland)
TMO: Kevin Beggs (Ireland)