Planet Rugby

Preview: Ospreys v Treviso

11th October 2012 12:31

Share:

Richard Hibbard Ospreys aironi

150 games for Ospreys: Richard Hibbard

Ospreys kick off their Heinken Cup campaign with tricky clash against Treviso at Liberty Stadium on Friday.

In the past Ospreys may well have been resounding favourites for the opening fixture in Pool Two, but that is no longer the case after Treviso's shock win over the defending Pro12 champions a few weeks ago.

Ospreys has truned their poor start to the season around and head coach Steve Tandy's first game in charge in Europe is the perfect opportunity to show they are on the right track.

Last season saw Treviso enjoy their best campaign in the Heineken Cup for seven years with victory over Biarritz and a draw against the Ospreys.

Kris Burton is wracking up the points in front of goal and in Italy flanker Roberto Barbieri, Treviso have the highest scoring forward in the Pro12 with six tries already this season. The Ospreys will be banking on Dan Biggar being on song with the boot.

Richard Hibbard makes his 150th Ospreys appearance while Jonathan Thomas plays his 50th Heineken Cup game. Ryan Bevington makes his first Heineken Cup start.

"We've been drawn against the best team in Italy, France and England, there are six Heineken Cup titles in the pool and every match is going to be a real test," said Ospreys backs coach Gruff Rees.

"Treviso first up is a difficult one, we've seen for ourselves already, not just on the opening day of the season but also last year in the Heineken, how good a team they are. Leicester have also found it tough going against them in Europe and Toulouse will be well aware of how Biarritz fared against them last season, so we will be paying them the respect you would expect for such a good team.

"It's crucial in Europe to get off to a good start, and crucial that you win your home games, so the importance of Friday night can't be underestimated."

Meanwhile, Treviso welcome back wing Ludovico Nitoglia from injury as he returns to the starting XV for the first time since mid September. Tobias Botes and Kristopher Burton form a dangerous half-back pairing.

In the pack, Manoa Vosawai is back in the number eight jersey after a five-month layoff with a shoulder injury.

The other changes are in the front row where experiened Leonardo Ghiraldini, is joined by Alberto De Marchi and Jacobus "Bees" Roux.

The teams:

Ospreys:15 Richard Fussell, 14 Hanno Dirksen, 13 Andrew Bishop, 12 Ashley Beck, 11 Eli Walker, 10 Dan Biggar, 9 Kahn Fotuali'i, 8 Jonathan Thomas, 7 Justin Tipuric, 6 Ryan Jones, 5 Ian Evans, 4 Alun Wyn Jones (c), 3 Adam Jones, 2 Richard Hibbard, 1 Ryan Bevington.
Replacements: 16 Matthew Dwyer, 17 Duncan Jones, 18 Aaron Jarvis, 19 George Stowers, 20 Sam Lewis, 21 Rhys Webb, 22 Matthew Morgan, 23 Tom Isaacs.

Treviso: 15 Luke McLean, 14 Ludovico Nitoglia, 13 Tommaso Benvenuti, 12 Alberto Sgarbi, 11 Tommaso Iannone, 10 Kristopher Burton, 9 Tobias Botes, 8 Manoa Vosawai, 7 Alessandro Zanni, 6 Simone Favaro, 5 Valerio Bernab˛, 4 Antonio Pavanello (c), 3 Jacobus Roux, 2 Leonardo Ghiraldini, 1 Alberto De Marchi,
Replacements: 16 Enrico Ceccato, 17 Ignacio Fernandez-Rouyet, 18 Pedro Di Santo, 19 Francesco Minto, 20 Paul Derbyshire, 21 Robert Barbieri, 22 Fabio Semenzato, 23 Andrea Pratichetti.

Date: Friday, October 12
Venue: Liberty Stadium, Swansea
Kick-off: 20:00 BST (19:00 GMT)
Referee: Neil Paterson

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Top 14
Friday , August 29
Clermont Auvergne vs Montpellier20:45
Saturday , August 30
La Rochelle vs Toulouse14:45
Lyon vs Brive18:30
Oyonnax vs Stade Francais18:30
Castres vs Bay Of Plenty18:30
Grenoble vs Bordeaux-Begles18:30
Racing Metro Paris vs Toulon20:45
More Top 14 fixtures
Currie Cup
Friday , August 29
Pumas vs Sharks19:10
Saturday , August 30
Griquas vs Cheetahs15:00
Blue Bulls vs Western Province17:05
Eastern Province Kings vs Lions19:10
More Currie Cup fixtures
ITM Cup
Thursday , August 28
Canterbury vs NorthlandCanterbury vs Northland Preview
Friday , August 29
Wellington vs ManawatuWellington vs Manawatu Preview
Saturday , August 30
Counties Manukau vs Hawkes Bay04:35
Southland vs Otago17:35
North Harbour vs Waikato09:35
Sunday , August 31
Taranaki vs Bay Of Plenty14:35
Auckland vs Tasman16:35
More ITM Cup fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
ITM Cup
Wednesday, August 27
Waikato 17 - 46 TaranakiWaikato vs Taranaki Report
Sunday , August 24
Manawatu 7 - 35 AucklandManawatu vs Auckland Report
Bay Of Plenty 27 - 56 TasmanBay Of Plenty vs Tasman Report
More ITM Cup results
Rugby Championship
Saturday , August 23
New Zealand 51 - 20 AustraliaNew Zealand vs Australia Report
Argentina 31 - 33 South AfricaArgentina vs South Africa Report
More Rugby Championship results
Top 14
Brive 6 - 21 Clermont AuvergneBrive vs Clermont Auvergne Report
Stade Francais 23 - 20 Lyon
Bordeaux-Begles 30 - 21 Racing Metro Paris
Montpellier 20 - 17 GrenobleMontpellier vs Grenoble Report
Toulon 60 - 19 La Rochelle
Bayonne 38 - 12 Oyonnax
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Blue Bulls 30 - 25 Eastern Province KingsBlue Bulls vs Eastern Province Kings Report
Sharks 19 - 16 CheetahsSharks vs Cheetahs Report
Western Province 27 - 14 LionsWestern Province vs Lions Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Northland 35 - 5 WellingtonNorthland vs Wellington Report
Counties Manukau 29 - 25 OtagoCounties Manukau vs Otago Report
More ITM Cup results
Top 14
Friday , August 22
Toulouse 35 - 6 CastresToulouse vs Castres Report
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Pumas 33 - 15 GriquasPumas vs Griquas Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Waikato 27 - 58 CanterburyWaikato vs Canterbury Report
Hawkes Bay 29 - 26 TaranakiHawkes Bay vs Taranaki Report
Thursday , August 21
North Harbour 21 - 25 Southland
Sunday , August 17
Tasman 35 - 15 Hawkes BayTasman vs Hawkes Bay Report
Northland 23 - 28 Manawatu
More ITM Cup results
Rugby Championship
Saturday , August 16
Australia 12 - 12 New ZealandAustralia vs New Zealand Report
South Africa 13 - 6 ArgentinaSouth Africa vs Argentina Report
More Rugby Championship results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Bath00
2Exeter00
3Gloucester00
4Harlequins00
5Leicester Tigers00