Planet Rugby

Preview: Gloucester v Exeter

21st December 2012 11:09

Share:

Ben Morgan London Irish v Gloucester Aviva Premiership 2012

At 8: Gloucester's Ben Morgan

Gloucester boss Nigel Davies has kept faith with the majority of the team that defeated London Irish last weekend, as the Exeter Chiefs head to Kingsholm for Saturday's Aviva Premiership clash.

There are only three new faces - Nick Wood and Shaun Knight come in at loosehead and tighthead respectively, while Ben Morgan returns at number eight.

Tom Savage moves from blindside into the second row, with Sione Kalamafoni shifting across the back row from number eight to wear the number six shirt.

It's an encounter between two of the in-form sides in the Aviva Premiership. Exeter have won seven in a row, while Gloucester have lost only one out of the last six.

Since the Chiefs were promoted to the Aviva Premiership for 2010-11 season, the spoils have been shared with two wins apiece.

So, another close game beckons this weekend, a fact not lost upon Davies.

"There's not much between us and the top, and there's not much between us and Exeter. So, it really makes Saturday's game very interesting, and it will tell us a lot, at the midway point, about exactly where we are," he said.

"We're coming up against a very good, organised and committed team on Saturday. Our work rate has to be right up there, and the quality of what we do has to be very accurate in order for us to get a result.

"We've got a lot of respect for Exeter. But I think that our team is evolving and developing, and I'm sure they'll show us a lot of respect as well."

Meanwhile, Exeter Chiefs coach Rob Baxter has gone against tinkering too much with his winning formula, making four changes to the team that defeated the Scarlets 30-20 a week ago in the Heineken Cup

Three of those changes come in the back division where Luke Arscott, Jason Shoemark and Matt Jess all return, whilst up front the solitary difference in the pack sees Richard Baxter come in for the injured Tom Johnson at number eight.

Form: Gloucester's only loss in their last six games in all competitions was 23-28 at Saracens in the Aviva Premiership on 2 December. Gloucester have suffered just one home defeat at Kingsholm this season: 19-24 to Northampton on the opening weekend. Exeter Chiefs have won their last seven matches in all competitions since their 15-23 reversal to Bath at The Rec on 27 October - their best run since November 2009. The Chiefs have won their last three away games. The four previous Aviva Premiership encounters between the two clubs have been shared two wins apiece. The Chiefs won 28-27 on their most recent visit to Kingsholm on 24 March 2012.

The teams:

Gloucester 15 Rob Cook, 14 Charlie Sharples, 13 Mike Tindall, 12 Billy Twelvetrees, 11 Shane Monahan, 10 Freddie Burns, 9 Jimmy Cowan, 8 Ben Morgan,7 Akapusi Qera,6 Sione Kalamafoni,5 Jim Hamilton (c), 4 Tom Savage, 3 Shaun Knight,2 Darren Dawidiuk, 1 Nick Wood,
Replacements: 16 Huia Edmonds, 17 Dan Murphy, 18 Dario Chistolini, 19 Will James, 20 Matt Cox, 21 Dan Robson, 22 Tim Molenaar, 23 Martyn Thomas.

Exeter: 15 Luke Arscott, 14 Gonzalo Camacho, 13 Phil Dollman, 12 Jason Shoemark, 11 Matt Jess, 10 Gareth Steenson, 9 Haydn Thomas, 8 Richard Baxter, 7 James Scaysbrook (capt), 6 Dean Mumm, 5 James Hanks, 4 Aly Muldowney, 3 Hoani Tui, 2 Simon Alcott, 1 Brett Sturgess.
Replacements: 16 Neil Clark, 17 Ben Moon, 18 Carl Rimmer, 19 Tom Hayes, 20 Ben White, 21 Kevin Barrett, 22 Ignacio Mieres, 23 Ian Whitten.

Date: Saturday, December 22
Venue: Kingsholm
Kick-off: 15:00 GMT
Referee: Llyr Apgeraint-Roberts
Assistant referees: Paul Dix, Robin Goodliffe
Television match official: David Hudson

  • Aviva Prem Fixtures
Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 28
Bath vs Harlequins19:45
Saturday , November 29
Leicester Tigers vs Wasps15:00
Exeter vs Saracens16:30
Sunday , November 30
London Irish vs Gloucester13:00
London Welsh vs Northampton14:30
Newcastle Falcons vs Sale Sharks15:15
Saturday , December 20
Sale vs Exeter14:00
Harlequins vs Newcastle15:00
Northampton vs Leicester15:00
Gloucester vs Bath15:00
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
  • Aviva Prem Results
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 23
Saracens 24 - 31 NorthamptonSaracens vs Northampton Report
London Welsh 5 - 26 Leicester TigersLondon Welsh vs Leicester Tigers Report
Saturday , November 22
London Irish 23 - 33 BathLondon Irish vs Bath Report
Exeter 31 - 15 WaspsExeter vs Wasps Report
Friday , November 21
Harlequins 12 - 16 Sale SharksHarlequins vs Sale Sharks Report
Newcastle Falcons 20 - 10 GloucesterNewcastle Falcons vs Gloucester Report
Sunday , November 16
Leicester Tigers 21 - 21 SaracensLeicester Tigers vs Saracens Report
Wasps 71 - 7 London WelshWasps vs London Welsh Report
Saturday , November 15
Sale Sharks 36 - 8 London IrishSale Sharks vs London Irish Report
Bath 23 - 14 Newcastle FalconsBath vs Newcastle Falcons Report
More Aviva Premiership results
  • Aviva Prem Table
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Northampton830
2Exeter828
3Bath828
4Saracens825
5Leicester Tigers821