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Preview: Bath v Montpellier

18th November 2011 12:55

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Stephen Donald

First start: Stephen Donald

World Cup winning fly-half, Stephen Donald, will make his first Bath start on Sunday when he runs out at the Recreation Ground against Montpol.

After making his debut as a replacement last weekend against Glasgow for Tom Heathcote, this will be the ten's first start and first at home.

Sunday's line-up also sees the return of Lewis Moody, who joins Francois Louw and Simon Taylor in the back row, with Guy Mercer benched.

Olly Barkley could make his first appearance since last March if he is called on, which also features Mark Lilley in the only other change.

Bath are bottom of the Pool after the 26-21 defeat to Glasgow and know they have to beat their French visitors to keep their hopes of a place in the knockout stages of the tournament alive.

The Premiership side have a mixed recent record at home in Europe but have won 11 of their 18 games against French opposition. Montpellier have played Bath twice in Europe and lost both games but this will be their first Heineken Cup game away from home.

Last season's Top 14 finalists are in their first season of Heineken Cup rugby but will be still wondering how they threw away a home victory against the reigning champions Leinster last weekend.

There are a few changes to the French side, notabley the return to the starting XV of goal-kicking Argentine wing Martin Bustos Moyano.

At scrum-half, French international Julien Tomas takes over from Benoit Paillaugue.

In the back row, Mamuka Gorgodze shifts to number eight as Rémy Martin returns to the side of the scrum.

The teams:

Bath: 15 Nick Abendanon, 14 Olly Woodburn, 13 Dan Hipkiss, 12 Sam Vesty, 11 Tom Biggs, 10 Stephen Donald, 9 Michael Claassens, 8 Simon Taylor, 7 Lewis Moody, 6 Francois Louw, 5 Ryan Caldwell, 4 Stuart Hooper (c), 3 David Wilson, 2 Ross Batty, 1 David Flatman.
Replacements: 16 Mark Lilley, 17 Charlie Beech, 18 Anthony Perenise, 19 Dave Attwood, 20 Guy Mercer, 21 Mark McMillan, 22 Olly Barkley, 23 Jack Cuthbert.

Montpellier:15 Lucas Amorosino, 14 Martin Bustos Moyano, 13 Geoffrey Doumayrou, 12 Paul Bosch, 11 J-B Peyras Loustalet, 10 Francois Trinh-Duc, 9 Julien Tomas, 8 Mamuka Gorgodze, 7 Fulgence Ouedraogo, 6 Rémy Martin, 5 Thibaut Privat, 4 Joe Tuineau, 3 Maximiliano Bustos, 2 Agustin Creevy, 1 Mikheil Nariashvili.
Replacements: 16 Rassie van vuuren, 17 Na'ama Leleimalefaga, 18 George Jgenti, 19 Drickus Hancke, 20 Masi Matadigo, 21 Benoit Paillaugue, 22 Santiago Fernandez, 23 Yoan Audrin,

Date: Sunday, November 20
Kick-off: 15:00
Venue: Recreation Ground
Referee: Alain Rolland (Ireland)

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