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Bath lose Carl Fearns and Ben Skirving for rest of 2012

Last Updated: 15/11/12 1:49pm

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Carl Fearns: Set to miss rest of the year

Carl Fearns: Set to miss rest of the year

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Bath look set to be without back-row duo Carl Fearns and Ben Skirving for the rest of the year.

Both men will be on the sidelines for six or seven weeks, Fearns after undergoing ankle surgery and Skirving has a thumb injury.

With Francois Louw on South Africa duty, Bath are short on experience in the back row, and academy graduates Guy Mercer, Will Skuse and Josh Ovens will be given extended runs in the team along with former Scotland No 8 Simon Taylor.

"The form of Will Skuse has been a godsend to us," said forwards coach Neil Hatley.

"He has done really well and it's been good to see Josh Ovens and Guy Mercer really grabbing their opportunity after some good performances for Bath United.

"These young guys are fantastic - they bring a lot of energy and enthusiasm."

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