Planet Rugby

Preview: Worcester v Exeter

29th March 2013 11:30

Share:

exeter worcester steenson

Pivot: Gareth Steenson

Forward duo Semisi Taulava and Chris Jones and are both recalled by Worcester Warriors for their clash with Exeter Chiefs.

Lock Jones, who makes his 199th Premiership appearance, and number eight Taulava both start games for the first time since January as head coach Richard Hill makes a total of five changes to his starting line-up.

The third change in the pack sees Scotland international tighthead prop Euan Murray called-up, with ex-Exeter front-rower John Andress moving to the bench.

Centre Josh Matavesi will face his former employers after being named in midfield alongside Alex Grove, while scrum-half Jonny Arr returns to partner Andy Goode at half back.

Scrum-half Shaun Perry could make his first senior appearance in over six months after being named among the replacements alongside all-action flanker Sam Betty, who also returns to the matchday squad.

"I can't accept going to London Irish, who are third bottom, and losing 26-6. That is totally unacceptable so we owe the supporters a big performance against Exeter," said Hill.

"There's been two other occasions - away at Bath and away at Exeter - where we've performed poorly and we've responded well on both occasions.

"We perform well at home so we have made sure all the players are in a very positive frame of mind so we can play like we have done week in week out here.

"Exeter are a team that don't make many mistakes. They're a machine-like team who are very efficient and well-drilled. It will be a very testing game for us."

Meanwhile, Exeter's sole change to the starting XV sees James Scaysbrook, who missed the game last weekend due to the birth of his second daughter, return in the back-row in place of Ben White.

White moves onto the bench at the expense of former Warriors player Kai Horstmann, whilst Fijian international Sireli Naqelevuki is also back on the bench in place of Ian Whitten after missing out last week due to a knee injury. Saturday's game will also mark the 100th league appearance for winger Matt Jess in an Exeter jersey.

Form: The Warriors have not won on the road in the Premiership for 15 months - an unwanted sequence that was stretched to 14 consecutive league defeats with a 26-6 loss to the Exiles last weekend. Worcester have not been in fine form in recent weeks - their sole victory in their last seven Aviva Premiership fixtures was 29-23 at home to London Wasps earlier this month. Comparatively, Exeter won their most recent away match 27-16 at Harlequins but have not managed back-to-back away victories in the competition since last April. All three previous Aviva Premiership contests between the two clubs have been taken by the Chiefs, while Worcester's most recent victory over Exeter was 25-14 at the old County Ground in National One in March 2004.

The teams:

Worcester Warriors: 15 Chris Pennell, 14 Josh Drauniniu, 13 Alex Grove, 12 Josh Matavesi, 11 David Lemi, 10 Andy Goode, 9 Jonny Arr, 8 Semisi Taulava, 7 Matt Kvesic, 6 Neil Best, 5 Chris Jones, 4 James Percival (c), 3 Euan Murray, 2 Ed Shervington, 1 Matt Mullan.
Replacements: 16 Aleki Lutui, 17 Ceri Jones, 18 John Andress, 19 Dean Schofield, 20 Sam Betty, 21 Shaun Perry, 22 Danny Gray, 23 Jon Clarke.

Exeter Chiefs: 15 Luke Arscott, 14 Jack Nowell, 13 Phil Dollman, 12 Jason Shoemark, 11 Matt Jess, 10 Gareth Steenson, 9 Haydn Thomas, 8 Richard Baxter (c), 7 James Scaysbrook, 6 Dave Ewers, 5 Damian Welch, 4 Dean Mumm, 3 Hoani Tui, 2 Jack Yeandle, 1 Carl Rimmer.
Replacements: 16 Chris Whitehead, 17 Brett Sturgess, 18 Craig Mitchell, 19 James Hanks, 20 Ben White, 21 Will Chudley, 22 Henry Slade, 23 Sireli Naqelevuki.

Date: Saturday, 30 March
Venue: Sixways
Kick-off: 15:00
Referee: David Rose
Assistant referees: Steve Lee and Nigel Carrick

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , October 3
Bath vs Saracens19:45
Saturday , October 4
London Irish vs Northampton15:00
Harlequins vs London Welsh15:00
Gloucester vs Leicester15:15
Sunday , October 5
Sale vs Wasps14:00
Newcastle vs Exeter15:00
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
Rugby Championship
Saturday , October 4
South Africa vs New Zealand16:05
Argentina vs Australia23:40
More Rugby Championship fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Friday , October 3
Connacht vs Cardiff Blues19:35
Ulster vs Edinburgh19:35
Zebre vs Ospreys19:35
Saturday , October 4
Leinster vs Munster18:30
Sunday , October 5
Benetton Treviso vs Glasgow14:00
Scarlets vs Newport Gwent D'gons16:00
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
Top 14
Friday , October 3
Oyonnax vs Toulon20:45
Saturday , October 4
Bordeaux-Begles vs Clermont Auvergne14:45
Racing Metro Paris vs Brive18:30
Bayonne vs Montpellier18:30
La Rochelle vs Lyon18:30
Castres vs Grenoble18:30
Toulouse vs Stade Francais20:45
More Top 14 fixtures
Currie Cup
Friday , October 3
Pumas vs Blue Bulls15:00
Sharks vs Lions19:10
Saturday , October 4
Cheetahs vs Western Province14:00
Griquas vs Eastern Province Kings15:00
More Currie Cup fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
ITM Cup
Wednesday, October 1
Hawkes Bay 36 - 14 WellingtonHawkes Bay vs Wellington Report
More ITM Cup results
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , September 28
Wasps 35 - 18 NewcastleWasps vs Newcastle Report
Exeter 36 - 13 HarlequinsExeter vs Harlequins Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Guinness PRO12
Newport Gwent D'gons 33 - 15 Benetton TrevisoNewport Gwent D
More Guinness PRO12 results
ITM Cup
Tasman 32 - 24 OtagoTasman vs Otago Report
Canterbury 26 - 28 SouthlandCanterbury vs Southland Report
More ITM Cup results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , September 27
Leicester 19 - 22 London IrishLeicester vs London Irish Report
Saracens 40 - 19 Sale SharksSaracens vs Sale Sharks Report
Northampton 31 - 24 BathNorthampton vs Bath Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Rugby Championship
South Africa 28 - 10 AustraliaSouth Africa vs Australia Report
Argentina 13 - 34 New ZealandArgentina vs New Zealand Report
More Rugby Championship results
Guinness PRO12
Zebre 13 - 6 UlsterZebre vs Ulster Report
Munster 14 - 19 OspreysMunster vs Ospreys Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Top 14
Toulon 40 - 17 MontpellierToulon vs Montpellier Report
Grenoble 27 - 25 Racing Metro ParisGrenoble vs Racing Metro Paris Report
Brive 34 - 24 Bordeaux-Begles
Oyonnax 8 - 19 Clermont Auvergne
Stade Francais 43 - 10 La Rochelle
Lyon 28 - 18 Castres
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Sharks 53 - 24 Eastern Province KingsSharks vs Eastern Province Kings Report
Griquas 8 - 46 LionsGriquas vs Lions Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Waikato 20 - 22 ManawatuWaikato vs Manawatu Report
North Harbour 28 - 25 Hawkes Bay
Counties Manukau 55 - 7 WellingtonCounties Manukau vs Wellington Report
More ITM Cup results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , September 26
London Welsh 10 - 46 GloucesterLondon Welsh vs Gloucester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Saracens418
2Northampton416
3Bath415
4Exeter414
5Wasps411