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Challenge Cup preview: Pool Three

05th December 2007 14:20

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Carl Hayman on his Newcastle debut

Hayman: Getting to grips with life at Newcastle

Connacht and Newcastle will get the Pool 3 action underway on Friday before Brive entertain Cetransa El Salvador on Sunday, looking to stay in touch at the top. We preview all the action!

Connacht v Newcastle, Sportsground, Friday 7 December, 18:30 GMT

All Black prop Carl Hayman will make his first start in a Newcastle shirt on Friday, as the Falcons make five changes for their European Challenge Cup trip to Irish province Connacht.

Hayman forms part of a new-look front row as fellow All Black Joe McDonnell and hooker Andy Long all come in to the side.

The only other personnel change in the pack sees Brent Wilson take the place of Andy Perry, with the ensuing reshuffle meaning a switch to the second row for Geoff Parling as Wilson packs down on the blindside flank.

There is just one change to the back line as Hall Charlton comes in for the rested James Grindal, while on the bench there is a return for fit-again number eight Russell Winter.

"I thought he made a good contribution even in those circumstances, and with the jet lag now out of his system and a good week of training under his belt we're looking forward to seeing how he goes," director of rugby, John Fletcher, said.

"We're obviously disappointed with both results at Wasps, but there are aspects that we can take in to the Connacht game such as our set piece, which is in great shape at the moment.

"Connacht are a good side who beat a Glasgow squad containing 14 internationals last weekend, so we are giving them the respect they deserve.

"They won that Glasgow game by four points but it could have been more, and then they ran a star-studded Leinster team very close in Dublin a couple of weeks ago too. We've watched a lot of them on video this season, and we know it will be a tough encounter because not many teams go to Ireland and win in European competition."

Meanwhile Connacht coach Michael Bradley has named the same side for the second week running.

He keeps faith with the same starting line-up and replacements bench that secured a narrow win over Glasgow in the Magners League last week.

Connacht: 15 Gavin Duffy, 14 Aidan Wynne, 13 Darren Yapp, 12 Mel Deane, 11 Ofisa Treviranus, 10 Andy Dunne, 9 Conor O'Loughlin, 8 John Muldoon, 7 Jonny O'Connor , 6 Mike McCarthy, 5 Andrew Farley (c), 4 Michael Swift, 3 Robbie Morris, 2 Adrian Flavin, 1 Brett Wilkinson.

Replacements: 16 John Fogarty, 17 Ronan Loughney, 18 David Gannon, 19 Ray Ofisa, 20 Conor McPhillips, 21 Tim Donnelly, 22 Matt Mostyn.

Newcastle:15 Mathew Tait, 14 Tom May, 13 Jamie Noon, 12 Toby Flood, 11 John Rudd, 10 Jonny Wilkinson, 9 Hall Charlton, 8 Phil Dowson (c), 7 Ben Woods, 6 Brent Wilson, 5 Mark Sorenson, 4 Geoff Parling, 3 Carl Hayman, 2 Andy Long, 1 Joe McDonnell.

Replacements: 16 Matt Thompson, 17 Micky Ward, 18 Sean Tomes, 19 Russell Winter, 20 Lee Dickson, 21 Steve Jones, 22 Tim Visser.

Referee: Franck Maciello (France)

Touch judges: Jean-Pierre Matheu (France), Eric Briquet-Campin (France)

Brive v Cetransa El Salvador

Stade Chaban Delmas, Sunday 9 December, 15:00 (14:00 GMT)

Brive will be looking to put the pressure back on the Falcons, the pool leaders, with a big win over El Salvador at Stade Chaban Delmas on Sunday.

The French giants sit third in the group after a loss to 25-19 loss to the English in Newcastle and a tight 15-6 win over Connacht at home.

Meanwhile, the Spanish visitors will be looking to kick-start their campaign after two heavy defeats.

Brive: 15 Barry Davies, 14 Farid Sid, 13 Ronie Cooke, 12 Fabrice Estebanez, 11 Alexis Palisson, 10 Benjamin Dambielle, 9 Jean-Baptiste Pejoine (capt), 8 Simon Azoulai, 7 Vincent Forgues, 6 Ryno Van der Merwe, 5 Bradley Mika, 4 Valério Bernabo, 3 Scott Franklin, 2 Jawad Djoudi, 1 Luke Harbut.

Replacements: 16 Jean-Philippe Bonrepaux, 17 Steve Thompson, 18 Charl van Rensburg, 19 Alex Manta, 20 Grégory Mahe, 21 Maxime Petitjean, 22 Suka Hufanga.

Cetransa El Salvador: 15 Ignacio Gutiérrez, 14 Tomás Brouwer, 13 Jose Revilla, 12 Raúl Turrión, 11 Meeuwis Stanley, 10 Redgarht Van Eyk, 9 Daniel Hunter, 8 Iván Criado, 7 Fernando Suárez, 6 Daniel Norate, 5 Sergio Souto, 4 Óscar Benito, 3 Jose Zapatero, 2 Manuel Serrano, 1 Ion Insausti.

Replacements:16 César Caballero, 17 Daniel Marrón, 18 Diego Zarzosa, 20 Jorge Molina, 21 Alejandro Gutiérrez, 22 Eduardo Fernández.

Referee: David Jones (Wales)

Touch judges: Huw David (Wales), Phil Harry (Wales)

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