Faletau back in the side as Bath take on Wasps
TAULUPE Faletau returns to action for Bath Rugby as they take on Wasps at the Rec today in round five of the Heineken Champions Cup.
Luke Charteris leads the side out from the second row, forming a lock partnership with Elliott Stooke.
Jacques van Rooyen and Max Lahiff line up either side of Jack Walker in the front row.
Faletau comes into the side at blindside flanker, teaming up with Josh Bayliss, who makes his European debut from openside. Zach Mercer starts at number eight.
Max Green forms an exciting half- back pairing with Rhys Priestland, and Max Wright starts inside Max Clark in the midfield.
Aled Brew and Tom Homer come in on the left and right wings, while Darren Atkins completes the backline as he starts at full-back.
For Wasps, winger Ross Neal has recovered from a hip knock to come in for Elliot Daly, who is rested, while Rob Miller replaces the injured Willie Le Roux at full-back.
Bristol Bears travel to Enisei-STM in Sochi as the European Challenge Cup campaign returns.
Pat Lam’s men must record victory over the Russian outfit to keep their hopes of progressing to the knockout stages alive.
Bristol name an all-Englandqualified matchday squad, with four changes to the side that beat La Rochelle in the previous round of the competition. Luke Daniels and Andy Uren come into the backline, while Nick Fenton-Wells and Jake Armstrong are included in the front row.
“Playing in Russia will be a unique experience for a lot of the guys, but we’ve ensured that the travelling and logistics involved won’t affect our preparation,” said head coach Lam.
“We have a great opportunity to go to Sochi and come home with the victory if we approach the fixture with the right mindset and bring physicality to all areas of our game.”
With Tom Lindsay unavailable due to a family bereavement, Harry Thacker is named in the squad.