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Preview: Bath v Northampton

27th January 2012 07:18

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SKY_MOBILE Stuart Hooper Bath Rugby

Stuart Hooper: Bath leader returns

Bath captain Stuart Hooper returns to the team's line-up for Saturday's LV= Cup game against Northampton Saints at the Recreation Ground.

Hooper comes back to partner Ryan Caldwell in the second row, with Ben Skirving, Francois Louw and Simon Taylor combining in the back row. Ross Batty starts at hooker, with David Flatman and Anthony Perenise packing down either side of him in the front row.

Michael Claassens partners Stephen Donald in the half-backs once more, with Tom Biggs and Olly Woodburn taking their places on the wings. Olly Barkley and Sam Vesty form a new centre pairing, and Nick Abendanon completes the line-up at full-back.

Both sides sit at the top of their pools going into the game, with maximum points being taken in their respective first two fixtures, and will be determined to get one step closer to securing a semi-final place.

"We're looking forward to what we know will be a tough challenge for us, against a strong Northampton Saints squad," said Bath director of rugby, Sir Ian McGeechan.

The teams:

Bath: 15 Nick Abendanon, 14 Olly Woodburn, 13 Sam Vesty, 12 Olly Barkley, 11 Tom Biggs, 10 Stephen Donald, 9 Michael Claassens, 8 Simon Taylor, 7 Francois Louw, 6 Ben Skirving, 5 Ryan Caldwell, 4 Stuart Hooper (c), 3 Anthony Perenise, 2 Ross Batty, 1 David Flatman
Replacements: 16. Lee Mears, 17 Charlie Beech, 18 Duncan Bell, 19 Will Spencer, 20 Guy Mercer, 21 Chris Cook, 22 Tom Heathcote, 23 Nick Scott.

Northampton: 15 Paul Diggin, 14 Jamie Elliott, 13 Scott Armstrong, 12 Greig Tonks, 11 Vasily Artemyev, 10 Stephen Myler, 9 Martin Roberts, 8 Samu Manoa, 7 Ben Nutley, 6 James Craig, 5 Christian Day, 4 Mark Sorensen, 3 Tom Mercey, 2 Brett Sharman, 1 Alex Waller.
Replacements: 16 Andy Long, 17 Soane Tonga'uiha, 18 Brian Mujati, 19 James Ingle, 20 Roger Wilson, 21 Ryan Glynn, 22 Tom May, 23 Noah Cato.

Date: Saturday, January 28
Kick-off: 14:30
Venue: Recreation Ground
Referee: Sean Davey (England)

  • Bath Fixtures
Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
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Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 28
Bath vs Harlequins19:45
Saturday , December 20
Gloucester vs Bath15:00
Saturday , December 27
Bath vs Exeter15:00
Saturday , January 3
Leicester vs Bath15:00
Saturday , January 10
Bath vs Wasps15:00
Sunday , February 15
Saracens vs Bath15:00
Saturday , February 21
Bath vs Northampton15:00
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Montpellier vs Bath19:45
Friday , December 12
Bath vs Montpellier19:45
Saturday , January 17
Toulouse vs BathTBC
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Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 22
London Irish 23 - 33 BathLondon Irish vs Bath Report
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Bath 23 - 14 Newcastle FalconsBath vs Newcastle Falcons Report
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Exeter 18 - 6 BathExeter vs Bath Report
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Bath 47 - 7 London Welsh
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Bath 19 - 21 Toulouse
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Glasgow 37 - 10 Bath
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Sunday , October 12
Wasps 29 - 22 Bath
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  • Table
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Northampton830
2Exeter828
3Bath828
4Saracens825
5Leicester Tigers821