Mont de Marsan v Gloucester: Amlin Challenge Cup preview
Last Updated: 11/10/12 8:18pm
Charlie Sharples: Returns from a shoulder injury
Gloucester welcome back England wing Charlie Sharples for their Amlin Challenge Cup opener against Mont de Marsan in France tonight.
Sharples has been sidelined with a shoulder injury suffered during the Aviva Premiership victory over London Irish last month.
Head coach Nigel Davies has rung the changes with Mike Tindall leading the side, while wing Ian Clark and hooker Koree Britton make their European debuts.
There are also opportunities for the likes of full-back Martyn Thomas, fly-half Tim Taylor and flanker Matt Cox, with Jimmy Cowan set for a second successive start from the bench.
Mont de Marsan are currently propping up the French Top 14 with just a solitary point so far this season.
The pool also includes London Irish and Bordeaux-Begles.
Mont de Marsan: tbc
Gloucester: 15 M Thomas; 14 C Sharples, 13 T Molenaar, 12 M Tindall (capt), 11 I Clark; 10 T Taylor, 9 D Lewis; 1 Y Thomas, 2 K Britton, 3 S Knight; 4 P Buxton, 5 W James; 6 M Cox, 7 A Hazell, 8 S Kalamafoni. Replacements: 16 T d'Apice, 17 N Wood, 18 D Chistolini, 19 E Stooke, 20 G Evans, 21 J Cowan, 22 H Trinder, 23 B Twelvetrees
What they said
Gloucester head coach Nigel Davies
"Momentum is very important. To continue winning and developing and building our game is really important. We've rotated the squad in the Premiership fixtures already, but it is important that we give an opportunity to some others.
"And we are expecting no less from these guys. They have to step up to the plate and they have to take our game forward."