Planet Rugby

Preview: Leeds v Worcester

23rd April 2010 13:56

Share:

Pat Sanderson relegation fight

Pat Sanderson: Back to lead the Warriors

Leeds coaching duo of Andy Key and Neil Back have made just one enforced change to their team for the relegation battle with Worcester.

Calum Clark came off injured against London Irish and has been replaced in the starting line-up by Kearnan Myall.

Leeds are still without Scott Barrow and Leigh Hinton, so the try scoring heroes from Madejski Stadium, Luther Burrell and Jon Goodridge, retain their place in the side.

Meanwhile, Scotland international Alex Grove is recalled to the Worcester Warriors starting line-up.

Centre Grove, who scored a dramatic try last weekend to secure a losing bonus point against London Wasps, is paired with Sam Tuitupou in midfield as Warriors prepare for the must-win game in Leeds. A defeat will leave Worcester all but relegated.

Skipper Pat Sanderson is also named in the team after recovering from the stinger injury that forced him off against Wasps.

"It has been a tough selection but I'm pleased that I've got a selection headache for a game of this magnitude in a number of areas, especially at centre where it has been a difficult choice," said Director of Rugby Mike Ruddock.

"Alex's recent form, particularly in making such an impact against London Wasps when he came off the bench, had to be rewarded with a starting spot.

"Pat has also improved all week and he has come through training so, providing he doesn't have any reaction, he will also be available to feature against Leeds.

"This is a huge game for us and we know what is on the line - we have had a few biggest games in the club's history over the last few years," added Ruddock.

"It is something that a lot of our players have had to deal with in the past, they have come through that test remarkable well and there is great team spirit here.

"Our fitness levels are good, our desire is fantastic and our spirit is superb. We have got good players and know we can win these games - we have to make sure we do the simple things well on Sunday.

"Leeds deserve huge credit for the way they have performed this season and I expect the game to be very tight.

"I don't think it will be a game of high scoring and counter attacking, it will be nice if we can do that but I expect it to be close and it could down to a goal kicking battle."

Form: The Warriors won 27-7 when the two teams met at Sixways in round two and Worcester have not achieved a league double over Leeds since they were paired together in National One in season 1997/98. Leeds Carnegie's three game losing run came to a halt with their 23-13 victory against London Irish at Madejski Stadium on Sunday, elevating Leeds to 9th place in the Guinness Premiership table: their highest placing (ignoring round one) since season 2004/05. Worcester Warriors have picked up just one league point from their last four games and need to win if they are to prevent themselves going through an entire league campaign without a victory on the road for the first time ever.

Leeds: 15 Jon Goodridge, 14 Henry Fa'afili, 13 Luther Burrell, 12 Seru Rabeni, 11 Lee Blackett, 10 Ceiron Thomas, 9 Scott Mathie, 8 Alfie To'oala, 7 Hendre Fourie, 6 Kearnan Myall, 5 Marco Wentzel (c), 4 Erik Lund, 3 Juan Gomez, 2 Andy Titterrell, 1 Mike Macdonald.
Replacements: 16 Phil Nilsen, 17 Gareth Hardy, 18 Phil Swainston, 19 Tom Denton, 20 Rhys Oakley, 21 Andy Gomarsall, 22 Joe Ford, 23 Henry Paul.

Worcester: 15 Chris Latham, 14 Chris Pennell, 13 Alex Grove, 12 Sam Tuitupou, 11 Marcel Garvey, 10 Willie Walker, 9 Jonny Arr, 8 Netani Talei, 7 Pat Sanderson (c), 6 Kai Horstmann, 5 Graham Kitchener, 4 Greg Rawlinson, 3 Tevita Taumoepeau, 2 Aleki Lutui, 1 Adam Black.
Replacements: 16 Callum Black, 17 Chris Fortey, 18 Olivier Sourgens, 19 Craig Gillies, 20 Chris Cracknell, 21 Ryan Powell, 22 Matthew Jones, 23 Dale Rasmussen.

Date: Sunday, April 25
Venue: Headingley
Kick-off: 15.00 BST
Referee: Dave Pearson

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Super Rugby
Saturday , August 2
Waratahs vs Crusaders19:40
More Super Rugby fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Super Rugby
Saturday , July 26
Crusaders 38 - 6 SharksCrusaders vs Sharks Report
Waratahs 26 - 8 BrumbiesWaratahs vs Brumbies Report
Saturday , July 19
Brumbies 32 - 30 ChiefsBrumbies vs Chiefs Report
Sharks 31 - 27 HighlandersSharks vs Highlanders Report
Saturday , July 12
Crusaders 34 - 8 HighlandersCrusaders vs Highlanders Report
Reds 3 - 34 WaratahsReds vs Waratahs Report
Lions 60 - 25 CheetahsLions vs Cheetahs Report
Stormers 10 - 34 SharksStormers vs Sharks Report
Friday , July 11
Blues 8 - 11 ChiefsBlues vs Chiefs Report
Brumbies 47 - 25 Western ForceBrumbies vs Western Force Report
Bulls 40 - 7 Melbourne RebelsBulls vs Melbourne Rebels Report
Sunday , July 6
Waratahs 44 - 16 HighlandersWaratahs vs Highlanders Report
Saturday , July 5
Crusaders 21 - 13 BluesCrusaders vs Blues Report
Western Force 30 - 20 RedsWestern Force vs Reds Report
Stormers 16 - 0 BullsStormers vs Bulls Report
Cheetahs 27 - 20 SharksCheetahs vs Sharks Report
Friday , July 4
Chiefs 24 - 16 HurricanesChiefs vs Hurricanes Report
Lions 34 - 17 Melbourne RebelsLions vs Melbourne Rebels Report
More Super Rugby results
International Match
Saturday , June 28
South Africa 55 - 6 ScotlandSouth Africa vs Scotland Report
More International Match results
Super Rugby
Hurricanes 16 - 9 CrusadersHurricanes vs Crusaders Report
Waratahs 39 - 8 BrumbiesWaratahs vs Brumbies Report
Western Force 14 - 40 BluesWestern Force vs Blues Report
Friday , June 27
Highlanders 29 - 25 ChiefsHighlanders vs Chiefs Report
Melbourne Rebels 20 - 36 RedsMelbourne Rebels vs Reds Report
More Super Rugby results
International Match
Saturday , June 21
Australia 39 - 13 FranceAustralia vs France Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Bath00
2Exeter00
3Gloucester00
4Harlequins00
5Leicester Tigers00