Preview: Bordeaux-Bègles v Clermont

Date published: January 13 2017

Bordeaux-Bègles boss Raphaël Ibanez has made eight changes to his starting XV for Sunday’s Champions Cup clash with Clermont.

Jean-Baptiste Dubié switches from the 14 shirt to 11, with Blair Connor dropping to the bench, as wing Nans Ducuing comes into the starting XV.

Joe Wakacegu is selected at inside centre while there is a new half-back pairing in Baptiste Serin and Ian Madigan.

In the pack Loann Goujon switches to blindside flanker with Marco Tauleigne getting the start at number eight, and Tom Palmer takes over from Luke Jones in the second-row.

Ole Avei and Sébastien Taofifenua are the new faces at hooker and loosehead prop respectively.

Meanwhile, Clermont make just two changes from the side who defeated Toulon comfortably in the Top 14 last weekend.

French internationals locks Paul Jedrasiak and Sébastien Vahaamahina form a new second-row partnership, taking the places of Flip van der Merwe and Arthur Iturria respectively.

Van der Merwe drops down to the bench where Alexandre Lapandry is the other new face, the back-row coming for Peceli Yato.

Damien Chouly will captain the side at blindside flanker, with France centres Wesley Fofana and Rémi Lamerat continuing in midfield.

Form: This will be the fourth meeting between the clubs; the previous three have seen an average of 62 points scored per game. UBB’s heaviest home defeat came at the hands of Clermont last season, losing 10-28 in Round 1. Clermont have won just two of seven away games against Top 14 opposition, beating Bordeaux-Bègles last season and Montauban in 2008. 40 players have featured for Bordeaux this season, more than any other side, while Clermont have used the third most players (37, level with Northampton). Wesley Fofana leads the way this season for both clean breaks (12) and defenders beaten (26).

The teams:

Bordeaux-Bègles: 15 Jean-Marcellin Buttin, 14 Nans Ducuing, 13 Jayden Spence, 12 Joe Wakacegu, 11 Jean-Baptiste Dubié, 10 Ian Madigan, 9 Baptiste Serin, 8 Marco Tauleigne, 7 Hugh Chalmers, 6 Loann Goujon, 5 Cyril Cazeaux, 4 Tom Palmer, 3 Vadim Cobilas, 2 Ole Avei, 1 Sébastien Taofifenua
Replacements: 16 Clément Maynadier, 17 Jean-Baptiste Poux, 18 Steven Kitshoff, 19 Berend Botha, 20 Luke Jones, 21 Yann Lesgourgues, 22 Blair Connor, 23 Geoffrey Cros

Clermont: 15 Isaia Toeava, 14 Noa Nakaitaci, 13 Remi Lamerat, 12 Wesley Fofana, 11 Adrien Plante, 10 Camille Lopez, 9 Morgan Parra, 8 Fritz Lee, 7 Viktor Kolelishvili, 6 Damien Chouly, 5 Arthur Iturria, 4 Paul Jedrasiak, 3 Davit Zirakashvili, 2 John Ulugia, 1 Raphael Chaume
Replacements: 16 Benjamin Kayser, 17 Vincent Debaty, 18 Aaron Jarvis, 19 Flip van der Merwe, 20 Alexandre Lapandry, 21 Ludovic Radosavljevic, 22 Benson Stanley, 23 Scott Spedding

Date: Sunday, January 15
Venue: Stade Chaban-Delmas
Kick-off: 14:00 local (13:00 GMT)
Referee: Nigel Owens (Wales)
Assistant Referees: Dan Jones (Wales), Wayne Davies (Wales)
TMO: Neil Hennessy (Wales)

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