Heineken Cup Pool 5: Leicester v Treviso on Friday night at Welford Road
Leicester look to bounce back from an opening Heineken Cup defeat when they host Italian Pro12 side Treviso on Friday.
Last Updated: 18/10/13 7:47pm
The Tigers, despite missing the likes of Manu Tuilagi and Tom Croft thanks to an ever-increasing injury list, have enjoyed a solid start to their Premiership campaign.
Their squad-depth has been tested in recent weeks, but their form has largely held, going into the Heineken Cup off the back of a tight home draw with much-fancied Northampton Saints.
The Tigers were castled in last week's maiden European clash away to Ulster, succumbing 22-16.
However, up against a fired-up Irish province, poor weather conditions and a typically partisan home crowd, the narrow loss was not hugely disheartening for the travelling supporters.
Indeed, Ravenhill is a ground associated with Heineken-heartbreak for the Tigers.
On their two European visits prior to Friday's fixture, the visitors suffered one-sided maulings at the hands of their rampant hosts.
However, this second round game is, to all intents and purposes, a must-win for Leicester. A bonus point victory should be the target for the Premiership side, with top spot in the pool likely to be hotly-contested.
Treviso have oft been regarded as a tough side to break down, and have been known to present more illustrious counterparts with a tricky proposition, particularly at home.
Their Pro12 form has been good thus far, with an excellent home win over Connacht boosting morale ahead of a difficult home tie with Montpellier last week.
Their pack is bolstered by plenty of experience and grunt, spearheaded by Italian international hooker Leonardo Ghiraldini, and at fly-half, Kiwi Matt Berquist is kicking well.
Their trouble last season lay in inconsistency. A commanding victory was book-ended by two lacklustre performances, or demoralising defeats.
With a change of coach on the horizon at the season's end, Treviso will relish the opportunity to go head-to-head with one of Europe's heavyweights.
Leicester Tigers: 15 Niall Morris, 14 Blaine Scully, 13 Vereniki Goneva, 12 Dan Bowden, 11 Adam Thompstone, 10 Toby Flood (c), 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Thomas Waldrom, 7 Julian Salvi, 6 Ed Slater, 5 Geoff Parling, 4 Graham Kitchener, 3 Dan Cole, 2 Tom Youngs, 1 Logovi'i Mulipola.
Replacements: 16 Neil Briggs, 17 Boris Stankovich, 18 Fraser Balmain, 19 Louis Deacon, 20 Jordan Crane, 21 David Mele, 22 Owen Williams, 23 Terrence Hepetema.
For Treviso: 15 Luke McLean, 14 Andrea Pratichetti, 13 Luca Morisi, 12 Alberto Sgarbi, 11 Christian Loamanu, 10 Mat Berquist, 9 Tobias Botes, 8 Robert Barbieri, 7 Alessandro Zanni, 6 Manoa Vosawai, 5 Valerio Bernabo, 4 Antonio Pavanello (capt), 3 Lorenzo Cittadini, 2 Enrico Ceccato, 1 Michele Rizzo.
Replacements: 16 Franco Sbaraglini, 17 Ignacio Fernandez Rouyet, 18 Pedro di Santo, 19 Marco Fuser, 20 Dean Budd, 21 Marco Filippucci, 22 Fabio Semenzato, 23 James Ambrosini.