Planet Rugby

Preview: Leicester v Ospreys

07th November 2013 12:19

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thomas waldrom leicester tigers v treviso

Starts: Thomas Waldrom

Leicester Tigers have handed senior debuts to centres George Catchpole and Javiah Pohe in Friday's LV= Cup home fixture against the Ospreys.

The teenagers line up side by side in the Tigers starting midfield in a team that includes their Development squad colleagues Joe Cain and Harry Thacker who made their senior bows in the Anglo-Welsh competition last season.

Italy U20 prop Tiziano Pasquali and Academy full-back Perry Humphreys are on the bench in their first appearance in a senior matchday squad.

Miles Benjamin makes his first appearance at Welford Road since joining the club last summer and Owen Williams continues at fly-half.

Experience in the team is provided by skipper Boris Stankovich, back-rowers Jamie Gibson and Thomas Waldrom, and Scott Hamilton in the backline. George Chuter and David Mélé are also among the replacements.

Tom Price, Harry Wells and Henry Purdy, all World Junior Championships winners with England U20s this summer, are named among the replacements.

Terrence Hepetema, Matt Smith and Dan Bowden were injured during last Saturday's game against Harlequins and sit out this week. Also unavailable due to injury are Anthony Allen, Gonzalo Camacho, Tom Croft, Vereniki Goneva, Rob Hawkins, Ryan Lamb, Scott Steele, Mathew Tait and Manu Tuilagi.

Tigers have five players away with England, plus Marcos Ayerza and Pablo Matera with Argentina and Logovi'i Mulipola (Samoa) this weekend.

Meanwhile, the depleted Ospreys will be led by second-row Lloyd Peers while Tom Habberfield and Sam Davies form the half-back combination.

Hanno Dirksen, Tom Isaacs and Morgan Allen are also included by head coach Steve Tandy.

"We are really looking forward to seeing this young, enthusiastic and exciting Ospreys team take to the field tomorrow night," he said.

"The LV Cup is the place where we see young players breakthrough and we are hoping our group take their opportunity with both hands.

"There are some youngsters who will see their first taste of top level professional rugby and what better place to do that, than Welford Road and against Leicester."

The teams:

Leicester Tigers: 15 Scott Hamilton, 14 Blaine Scully, 13 George Catchpole, 12 Javiah Pohe, 11 Miles Benjamin, 10 Owen Williams, 9 Sam Harrison, 8 Thomas Waldrom, 7 Jamie Gibson, 6 Michael Noone, 5 Sebastian de Chaves, 4 Joe Cain, 3 Fraser Balmain, 2 Harry Thacker, 1 Boris Stankovich (c).
Replacements: 16 George Chuter, 17 Tom Bristow, 18 Tiziano Pasquali, 19 Tom Price, 20 Harry Wells, 21 David Mélé, 22 Perry Humphreys, 23 Henry Purdy.

Ospreys: 15 Ross Jones, 14 Hanno Dirksen, 13 Tom Isaacs, 12 Matthew Jenkins, 11 Tom Grabham, 10 Sam Davies, 9 Tom Habberfield, 8 Morgan Allen, 7 Arthur Ellis, 6 Graham Knoop, 5 Rhodri Hughes, 4 Lloyd Peers (capt), 3 Joe Rees, 2 Matthew Dwyer, 1 Marc Thomas.
Replacements: 16 Rhys Hutchinson, 17 Nicky Smith, 18 Dan Suter, 19 Sam Williams, 20 Jack Jones, 21 Jake Cole, 22 Nathan Edwards, 23 Aisea Natoga.

Date: Friday, November 8
Kick-off: 19:45 GMT
Venue: Welford Road
Referee: David Rose (England)
Assistant referees: Nigel Carrick (England), Paul Dix (England)
Timekeeper: Brian Abrahams (England)
Television match official: David Sainsbury (England)
Assessor: Andrew Vertigan (England)

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