Cardiff Blues v Sale- Heineken Cup match preview

Last Updated: 19/01/13 3:17pm

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It will be the battle to avoid the Pool 6 wooden spoon on Saturday as Cardiff Blues host Sale in the Heineken Cup.

The Blues have named two changes to the side that picked up a four-try bonus point in Toulon.

In the forwards, Scott Andrews will start in place of Benoit Bourrust who moves to the bench whilst in the backs as Lloyd Williams returns from suspension to start at scrum-half. Lewis Jones moves to the bench.

With the recent bad weather conditions, Cardiff Arms Park ground staff have been working hard to prepare the pitch with the RAF on standby, to help clear the pitch of any overnight snow.

Meanwhile, fly-half Danny Cipriani has been dropped to the bench for Sale, as they instead go with Rob Miller at number ten. Cameron Shepherd continues in the full-back position.

The weather has also meant that the Sharks have been preparing for this game using the 3G pitches at the Salford City Stadium as the pitches at their Carrington training base are frozen solid.

Cardiff Blues: 15 Leigh Halfpenny, 14 Alex Cuthbert, 13 Owen Williams, 12 Jamie Roberts, 11 Harry Robinson, 10 Rhys Patchell, 9 Lloyd Williams, 8 Andries Pretorius, 7 Sam Warburton, 6 Josh Navidi, 5 James Down, 4 Lou Reed, 3 Scott Andrews, 2 Rhys Williams, 1 Sam Hobbs.

Replacements: 16 Kristian Dacey, 17 Nathan Trevett, 18 Benoit Bourrust, 19 Robin Copeland, 20 Michael Paterson, 21 Lewis Jones, 22 Jason Tovey, 23 Dafydd Hewitt.

Sale: 15 Cameron Shepherd, 14 Tom Brady, 13 Jordan Davies, 12 Mark Jennings, 11 Charlie Amesbury, 10 Rob Miller, 9 Will Cliff, 8 Richie Vernon, 7 David Seymour, 6 James Doyle, 5 Kearnan Myall, 4 Tom Holmes, 3 Vadim Cobilas, 2 Tommy Taylor, 1 Aston Croall.

Replacements: 16 Marc Jones, 17 Ross Harrison, 18 Eifion Lewis-Roberts, 19 Richie Gray, 20 Tom Cruse, 21 Nathan Fowles, 22 Danny Cipriani, 23 Mark Cueto.

What they said...

Cardiff Blues Director of Rugby Phil Davies

"Our Heineken Cup campaign started in Sale and it was a ridiculous game to lose. We played well for sixty minutes, with a great team performance but didn't get the result we wanted.

"Our position in the group obviously isn't where we want to be. We want to be making the quarter-finals and in a couple of years' time challenging in the competition. At the moment, the reality is that we are a young side and we are gaining valuable experience in all competitions.

"Saturday's match is a match we want to win for our supporters. Every time we put the shirt on, especially at the Arms Park, it's our responsibility. We want to try and create our own legacy now, making sure we build on all the great work some of the players and coaches have done here in the past. There is always something to every game we play and the players share that sentiment."

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