Planet Rugby

Preview: Leicester v Treviso

07th December 2012 09:43

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scott hamilton leicester treviso

On the wing: Scott Hamilton

Leicester will be looking to pick up valuable points in their Heineken Cup Pool when they host Treviso this week.

The English side, who last lifted the trophy a decade ago in 2002, need a win to build on their impressive 39-22 victory over PRO12 champions, the Ospreys, in their last outing.

While Toulouse, the four-times champions, are unbeaten and still lead the Pool, the Ospreys and the Tigers are all-square on five points as they enter the back-to-back round of games.

Leicester, who have won the Heineken Cup twice, will be hoping to put some breathing space between themselves and the Ospreys, who face the daunting prospect of a double-header against Toulouse.

Treviso, who have an astonishing 100 percent success rate at goal kicking in this season's tournament, will be aware that history is against them making any inroads at Welford Road.

The Tigers have not been beaten at Welford Road in the Heineken Cup since they lost to Munster back in October 2006. Treviso, despite being in the tournament for 15 years, have never progressed from the Pool stages.

Leicester welcome back England stars Tom and Ben Youngs, Geoff Parling, Manu Tuilagi and Dan Cole for Sunday's Heineken Cup match.

All five played a part in all of England's November Tests and return to club duties for the Pool 2 match against Italian club Treviso.

The Youngs brothers, Parling and Tuilagi are all included in the Tigers starting line-up by director of rugby Richard Cockerill, with Cole named among the replacements as Martin Castrogiovanni starts in the front row.

Vereniki Goneva is also back in a Tigers shirt after his autumn series with Fiji.

Scott Hamilton returns from injury and Dan Bowden is back in the starting line-up as Anthony Allen is ruled out. Logovi'i Mulipola is included among the replacements after his recovery from injury.

Meanwhile, Treviso field Luke McLean at full-back to allow Christian Loamanu a spot on the right wing.

James Ambrosini gets the nod at fly-half and partners Edoardo Gori, whilst Anthony Pavanello captains the side and is joined in the engine room by Valerio Bernabò rather than veteran Cornelius Van Zyl.

Defence will be essential for Treviso, with the Italian outfit having already conceded 71 points in just two matches.

The teams:

Leicester: 15 Mathew Tait, 14 Scott Hamilton, 13 Manusamoa Tuilagi, 12 Dan Bowden, 11 Vereniki Goneva, 10 George Ford, 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Thomas Waldrom, 7 Julian Salvi, 6 Ed Slater, 5 Geoff Parling (c), 4 Graham Kitchener, 3 Martin Castrogiovanni, 2 Tom Youngs, 1 Marcos Ayerza.
Replacements: 16 Rob Hawkins, 17 Logovi'i Mulipola, 18 Dan Cole, 19 Jordan Crane, 20 Richard Thorpe, 21 Micky Young, 22 Geordan Murphy, 23 Matt Smith.

Treviso: 15 Luke McLean, 14 Christian Loamanu, 13 Tommaso Benvenuti, 12 Luca Morisi, 11 Ludovico Nitoglia, 10 James Ambrosini, 9 Edoardo Gori, 8 Manoa Vosawai, 7 Dean Budd, 6 Simone Favaro, 5 Valerio Bernabò, 4 Antonio Pavanello (c), 3 Ignacio Fernandez Rouyet 2 Franco Sbaraglini, 1 Alberto De Marchi.
Replacements: 16 Leonardo Ghiraldini, 17 Michele Rizzo, 18 Lorenzo Cittadini, 19 Cornelius Van Zyl, 20 Francesco Minto, 21 Paul Derbyshire, 22 Fabio Semenzato, 23 Alberto Di Bernardo.

Date: Sunday, December 9
Kick-off: 15:00
Venue: Welford Road
Referee: Pascal Gauzere (France)
Assistant referees: Laurent Cardona (France), Stephan Pomarède (France)
Television match official: Gilles Cogne (France)
Timekeeper: David Hudson (England)

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