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Preview: Bath v Exeter

15th November 2013 11:04

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David Attwood Bath v Sale 2012

Returning: Dave Attwood

Juan Pablo Orlandi will make his first start for Bath at the Recreation Ground on Sunday as they face Exeter Chiefs in the LV= Cup.

Up against their West Country rivals, Bath are bolstered further by the release of England trio Dave Attwood, Anthony Watson and Rob Webber, who are all in the starting line-up.

Orlandi and Webber combine in the front row, alongside Nathan Catt at loosehead. Stuart Hooper returns to partner Dave Attwood in the engine room, as Matt Garvey and Carl Fearns start on the blindside and openside flanks respectively, with Leroy Houston completing the pack at number eight.

Martin Roberts and George Ford combine in the half-backs to control proceedings, with the powerful Matt Banahan and fleet-footed Anthony Watson on either wing. Ollie Devoto and Jonathan Joseph make up the midfield, and Nick Abendanon is at fullback.

Meanwhile, Exeter Chiefs seek to build on their opening round success with a win at a ground they have not tasted victory on since 1978.

A 19-5 victory over holders Harlequins - courtesy of a Sireli Naqelevuki try and 14 points from the boot of Ceri Sweeney - gave the Chiefs the ideal start to their domestic cup campaign at Sandy Park a week ago.

Although victorious last time out, the Chiefs have tinkered with their winning line-up for Sunday's showdown, making a total of seven changes to their starting XV. Into the pack come Chris Whitehead and Carl Rimmer in the front-row, whilst James Phillips is handed his first start of the season at No.8.

Behind them, Haydn Thomas and Henry Slade form a new half-back partnership, whilst the experienced Jason Shoemark not only returns to the midfield, but also skippers the side with Welshman Sweeney dropping down to the bench.

The other change sees summer Tom James brought into the back three at the expense of Jack Arnott.

Form:

Bath Rugby have won their last five matches in all tournaments since Sale Sharks beat them 19-13 in Salford in the Premiership early last month. Bath's only loss in their last 13 matches at the Rec in all tournaments was 20-36 to Stade Franšais in the quarter final of last season's European Challenge Cup. Bath have been defeated just once at home in the LV=Cup since 2008: 16-17 to Leicester Tigers in the 2012 semi-final.

Exeter Chiefs have lost only one of their last six matches in all competitions: 16-20 away to Glasgow in the European Cup on 20th October. Exeter have won their last two encounters in the LV=Cup but have never won three in a row in the history of the competition.

The two clubs also met at The Rec in the pool stages of last season's LV=Cup with the home side running out 16-6 victors. Bath also won their only other Anglo-Welsh meeting with the Chiefs, 31-3 at Sandy Park in February 2012. The Chiefs have never been victorious in four previous visits to the Rec in all competitions.

The teams:

Bath: 15 Nick Abendanon, 14 Anthony Watson, 13 Johnathan Joseph, 12 Ollie Devoto, 11 Matt Banahan, 10 George Ford, 9 Martin Roberts, 8 Leroy Houston, 7 Carl Fearns, 6 Matt Garvey, 5 Dave Attwood, 4 Stuart Hooper (c), 3 Juan Pablo Orlandi, 2 Rob Webber,1 Nathan Catt
Replacements: 16 Ross Batty, 17 Charlie Beech, 18 Kane Palma-Newport, 19 Dominic Day, 20 Mat Gilbert, 21 Chris Cook, 22 Tom Heathcote, 23 Tom Biggs

Exeter: 15 Luke Arscott, 14 Jack Nowell, 13 Sireli Naqelevuki 12 Jason Shoemark (c), 11 Tom James, 10 Henry Slade, 9 Haydn Thomas, 8 James Phillips, 7 James Scaysbrook, 6 Don Armand, 5 James Hanks, 4 Romana Graham, 3 Carl Rimmer, 2 Chris Whitehead, 1 Ben Moon
Replacements: 16 Greg Bateman, 17 Kieran Davies, 18 Alex Brown, 19 Will Carrick-Smith, 20 Joel Conlon, 21 Will Chudley, 22 Ceri Sweeney, 23 Ian Whitten

Date: Sunday, November 17
Kick-off: 13:00 GMT
Venue: The Rec
Referee: Andrew Small (England)
Assistant referees: Kevin Stewart (England), Paul Dix (England)
Television match official: Keith Lewis (England)
Timekeeper: Laurie Bryant (England)

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 28
Bath vs Harlequins19:45
Saturday , November 29
Leicester Tigers vs Wasps15:00
Exeter vs Saracens16:30
Sunday , November 30
London Irish vs Gloucester13:00
London Welsh vs Northampton14:30
Newcastle vs Sale15:15
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International Match
Saturday , November 29
Wales vs South Africa14:30
England vs Australia14:30
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Guinness PRO12
Friday , November 28
Munster vs Ulster19:35
Cardiff Blues vs Treviso19:35
Saturday , November 29
Zebre vs Edinburgh15:00
Leinster vs Ospreys17:15
Connacht vs Scarlets19:30
Sunday , November 30
Glasgow vs Newport Gwent D'gons16:00
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
Top 14
Saturday , November 29
Oyonnax vs Bordeaux-Begles18:00
Lyon vs Montpellier18:00
La Rochelle vs Bayonne18:00
Toulon vs Clermont Auvergne18:00
Castres vs Racing Metro Paris18:00
Sunday , November 30
Stade Francais vs Brive18:00
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Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 23
Saracens 24 - 31 NorthamptonSaracens vs Northampton Report
London Welsh 5 - 26 Leicester TigersLondon Welsh vs Leicester Tigers Report
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International Match
Georgia 35 - 24 JapanGeorgia vs Japan Report
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Guinness PRO12
Treviso 24 - 24 LeinsterTreviso vs Leinster Report
Edinburgh 28 - 13 Cardiff BluesEdinburgh vs Cardiff Blues Report
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Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 22
London Irish 23 - 33 BathLondon Irish vs Bath Report
Exeter 31 - 15 WaspsExeter vs Wasps Report
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International Match
Italy 6 - 22 South AfricaItaly vs South Africa Report
England 28 - 9 SamoaEngland vs Samoa Report
France 13 - 18 ArgentinaFrance vs Argentina Report
Wales 16 - 34 New ZealandWales vs New Zealand Report
Scotland 37 - 12 TongaScotland vs Tonga Report
Ireland 26 - 23 AustraliaIreland vs Australia Report
Romania 18 - 9 CanadaRomania vs Canada Report
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Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 21
Harlequins 12 - 16 Sale SharksHarlequins vs Sale Sharks Report
Newcastle Falcons 20 - 10 GloucesterNewcastle Falcons vs Gloucester Report
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International Match
Fiji 20 - 14 USAFiji vs USA Report
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Guinness PRO12
Dragons 12 - 38 MunsterDragons vs Munster Report
Ulster 25 - 16 OspreysUlster vs Ospreys Report
Connacht 43 - 3 ZebreConnacht vs Zebre Report
Scarlets 19 - 9 Glasgow WarriorsScarlets vs Glasgow Warriors Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 16
Leicester Tigers 21 - 21 SaracensLeicester Tigers vs Saracens Report
Wasps 71 - 7 London WelshWasps vs London Welsh Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Ireland 49 - 7 GeorgiaIreland vs Georgia Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 15
Sale Sharks 36 - 8 London IrishSale Sharks vs London Irish Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Northampton830
2Exeter828
3Bath828
4Saracens825
5Leicester Tigers821