Scarlets v Exeter Chiefs - Heineken Cup match preview
Last Updated: December 9, 2012 11:03am
Scarlets host Exeter Chiefs at Parc y Scarlets on Saturday with both sides hunting their first Heineken Cup Pool 5 victory this season after two opening defeats.
A bonus-point win is a must if either side hope to stay in touch with Clermont and defending champions Leinster at the top of the group.
The Chiefs are in their first season of Heineken Cup rugby and have yet to score a try in the competition.
But the Aviva Premiership side go into the game on the on the back of victories in their last five competitive fixtures and come up against a Scarlets team who have conceded the most tries in the group.
The hosts, who have lost five or their last Heineken Cup six matches, welcome back key internationals including Jonathan Davies and Matthew Rees.
But missing through injury are Gareth Davies (neck strain), Josh Turnbull (knee), Rob McCusker (ankle), Jordan Williams (shoulder), Emyr Phillips (neck) and George North (hip).
The Chiefs will be able to tap into the inside knowledge of lock Damien Welch, who joined from the Scarlets in the summer.
Scarlets: 15 Dan Newton, 14 Liam Williams, 13 Jonathan Davies (c), 12 Scott Williams, 11 Andy Fenby, 10 Rhys Priestland, 9 Aled Davies, 8 Kieran Murphy, 7 Johnathan Edwards, 6 Aaron Shingler, 5 Richard Kelly, 4 George Earle, 3 Samson Lee, 2 Matthew Rees, 1 Phil John.
Replacements: 16 Ken Owens, 17 Shaun Hopkins, 18 Jacobie Adriaanse, 19 Johan Synman, 20 Sione Timani, 21 Tavis Knoyle, 22 Aled Thomas, 23 Gareth Maule.
Exeter: 15 Luke Arscott, 14 Gonzalo Camacho, 13 Sireli Naqelevuki, 12 Jason Shoemark, 11 Matt Jess, 10 Gareth Steenson, 9 Haydn Thomas, 8 Richard Baxter, 7 James Scaysbrook, 6 Tom Johnson, 5 Damian Welch, 4 Tom Hayes (capt), 3 Hoani Tui, 2 Simon Alcott, 1 Brett Sturgess.
Replacements: 16 Neil Clark, 17 Ben Moon, 18 Carl Rimmer, 19 Aly Muldowney, 20 Dean Mumm, 21 Kevin Barrett, 22 Ignacio Mieres, 23 Ian Whitten.
What they said...
Scarlets winger Andy Fenby
It's not the start we've wanted, going into it without a win in the group. Everyone says you've got to win your home games and we haven't managed to do that with our opening round but certainly now we're going in all guns, we want that W and ultimately we're there to finish as high up in that group as possible."
Chiefs fly-half Gareth Steenson
"It's a big game, especially after the first two games we've had. But we're just looking to continue the momentum of the last few weeks. It's a different competition and if we want to progress in any way, we know we realistically have to go up there and get a result."
Don't miss any live and exclusive rugby union coverage this festive season. Click here to visit Sky Sports' Festive Calendar