Sale v Toulon - Heineken Cup match preview
Last Updated: 08/12/12 3:44pm
Toulon have named arguably their strongest starting line-up for the Heineken Cup fixture with Sale at Salford City Stadium on Saturday.
Facing a Sharks side which has struggled all year in the Aviva Premiership, Toulon will be strong favourites to get a victory this weekend.
The team includes experienced international players Carl Hayman, former Sharks favourite Andrew Sheridan, Juan Martin Fernandez Lobbe, Bakkies Botha, Jonny Wilkinson, Frederic Michalak and Matt Giteau.
With the Top 14 side already five points ahead of the rest of the teams in their group following two wins over Montpellier and Cardiff Blues, they will be confident visitors against Sale.
Meanwhile, Sale have chosen to start Rob Miller at fly-half ahead of the benched Danny Cipriani. Miller is joined in the half-backs by Will Cliff.
Wales and Lions No 8 Andy Powell is also on the bench as head coach John Mitchell selects a back-row trio of James Gaskell, David Seymour and Richie Vernon.
Sale: 15 Cameron Shepherd, 14 Mark Jennings, 13 Corne Uys, 12 Johnny Leota, 11 Mark Cueto, 10 Rob Miller, 9 Will Cliff, 8 Richie Vernon, 7 David Seymour, 6 James Gaskell, 5 Fraser McKenzie, 4 Richie Gray, 3 Tony Buckley, 2 Tommy Taylor, 1 Ross Harrison.
Replacements: 16 Tom Cruise, 17 Eifion Lewis-Roberts, 18 Vadim Cobilas, 19 Kearnan Myall, 20 Andy Powell, 21 Nathan Fowles, 22 Danny Cipriani, 23 Charlie Amesbury.
Toulon: 15 Delon Armitage, 14 Rudi Wulf, 13 Mathieu Bastareaud, 12 Matt Giteau, 11 David Smith, 10 Jonny Wilkinson, 9 Frederic Michalak, 8 Chris Masoe, 7 Steffon Armitage, 6 Juan Fernandez Lobbe, 5 Jocelino Suta, 4 Bakkies Botha, 3 Carl Hayman, 2 Sebastien Bruno, 1 Andrew Sheridan.
i>Replacements: 16 Jean-Charles Orioli, 17 Xavier Chiocci, 18 Davit Kubriashvili, 19 Pierrick Gunther, 20 Nick Kennedy, 21 Maxime Mermoz, 22 Sébastien Tillous-Borde, 23 Simon Shaw.
Heineken Cup week three 2012/13
Cardiff had their Heineken Cup hopes ended after falling to a third straight Pool Six loss at the hands of Montpellier.
Jonathan Humphreys praised the commitment and character shown by his Ospreys side after their 30-14 defeat by Toulouse.
Harlequins director of rugby Conor O'Shea refused to be carried away by the emphatic win over Zebre.
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