Preview: Oyonnax v Toulouse

Date published: January 15 2016

Toby Flood warming up for Toulouse

Toulouse have named former England fly-half Toby Flood at outside centre for Saturday's European Champions Cup clash with French rivals Oyonnax.

The four-time champions are looking to end their campaign on a high note after suffering back-to-back defeats to Ulster, which eliminated them for quarter-final contention for the second time in as many years.

Toulouse's only win in Pool 1 so far came at home to Oyonnax in Round Two via a hard-fought 24-18 victory at Stade Ernest Wallon.

Oyonnax will back themselves to take revenge this weekend having come so close against Ulster in their re-arranged Round 1 fixture. A 23-0 lead at the break last week ended in a 24-23 defeat.

Toulouse have named almost an entirely different team to the one that lost to Ulster last time out, with flanker Thierry Dusautoir one of only four survivors in the starting line-up.

Luke McAlister takes over from Jean-Marc Doussain at fly-half while Fijian flyer Semi Kunatani is the only player to keep his place in the backline.

Up front, Neemia Tialata makes a return at tighthead with Gregory Lamboley filling in on the flank. 

Form: Toulouse have won 10 of their 12 Champions Cup games against fellow French opposition (L1, D1). Oyonnax have won both of their home games against fellow French sides in European competition (both in the Challenge Cup). Toulouse have lost their last three away games in the Champions Cup, the last time they last four on the bounce was in 2001. Toulouse made almost 600 metres (593) with the ball in hand against Oyonnax when they met earlier this season (Oyonnax made 342), the most they have made in a Champions Cup game since making 612 v Connacht in December 2013.

The teams:

Oyonnax: 15 Quentin Etienne, 14 Silvere Tian, 13 Vincent Martin, 12 Eamonn Sheridan, 11 Uwa Tawalo, 10 Nicky Robinson, 9 Fabien Cibray, 8 Viliami Maafu, 7 Olivier Missoup, 6 Maurie Fa'asavalu, 5 Fabrice Metz, 4 Geoffrey Fabbri, 3 Antoine Guillamon, 2 Jody Jenneker, 1 Laurent Delboulbès,
Replacements: 16 Jeremie Maurouard, 17 Soane Tonga'uiha, 18 Giorgi Vepkhvadze, 19 Valentin Ursache, 20 Pierrick Gunther, 21 Julien Blanc, 22 Regis Lespinas, 23 Guillaume Bousses

Toulouse: 15 Clément Poitrenaud, 14 Kunatani Kunabuli, 13 Toby Flood, 12 Paul Perez, 11 Timoci Matanavou, 10 Luke McAlister, 9 David Mele, 8 Gillian Galan, 7 Gregory Lamboley, 6 Thierry Dusautoir, 5 Joe Tekori, 4 Romain Millo-Chluski, 3 Nemiah Tialata, 2 Julien Marchand, 1 Cyril Baille,
Replacements: 16 Dorian Aldegheri, 17 Vasil Kakovin, 18 Gert Muller, 19 Patricio Albacete, 20 Francois Cros, 21 Christopher Tolofua, 22 Jean-Marc Doussain, 23 Vincent Clerc.

Date: Saturday, January 16
Venue: Stade Charles Mathon
Kick-off: 16:15 local (15:15 GMT)
Referee: Greg Garner (England)
Assistant Referees: Tim Wigglesworth (England), Andrew Pearce (England)
TMO: Geoff Warren (England)

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