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  • European Rugby Champions Cup
  • Pool 1
  • 6th Dec 2013
  • KO 20:00
  • Ground: Stade Pierre Antoine
  • Att: 9,300

Heineken Cup Pool 1: Castres v Ospreys match preview

Last updated: 6th December 2013  

Heineken Cup Pool 1: Castres v Ospreys match preview

Ospreys back-row Justin Tipuric returns from Wales duty

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Castres and Ospreys have both made major changes to their teams ahead of their Heineken Cup clash at Stade Pierre Antoine on Friday.

Castres boss David Darricarrere has rung the changes to his starting XV with two changes in the back with Marcel Garvey replacing Romain Martial on the right wing and Paul Bonnefond taking over at inside centre in place of Remi Lamerat.

Up front, Pedrie Wannenburg is the only survivor in the back row, shifting from the flank to number eight where he takes over from Antonie Claassen. This means that Piula Faasalele and Ibrahim Diarra will be the starting flankers for this encounter.

In the second row Christophe Samson replaces Rodrigo Capo Ortega and packs down alongside Richie Gray. There's also a new front row with hooker Marc-Antoine Rallier and props Karena Wihongi and Mihaita Lazar starting at the expense of Brice Mach, Anton Peikrishvili and Saimone Taumoepeau.

France international Yannick Forestier is also included amongst the replacements as well as Seremaia Bai, who was on duty for Fiji last weekend against the Barbarians.

Meanwhile, Ospreys coach Steve Tandy has made seven changes to his run-on side for this encounter, welcoming back several Wales internationals who were on duty against Australia last weekend.

The back-line has three changes to the side that lost at home to Glasgow last weekend. On the wing, Aisea Natoga takes over from Hanno Dirksen while Dan Biggar and Rhys Webb replace Sam Davies and Tito Tebaldi as the starting halfbacks.

In the forwards, Ryan Jones and Justin Tipuric are at number eight and openside flank respectively at the expense of Morgan Allen and Sam Lewis, who are both included on the replacements bench.

Alun Wyn Jones is back in the second row and as captain which means there is no place in the matchday squad for Lloyd Peers while Ryan Bevington starts at loosehead ahead of Duncan Jones, who is also riding pine.

The match will be significant for Aisea Natoga, who makes his Heineken Cup debut and Tyler Ardron who starts his first match in the tournament.

The teams:

Castres: Dulin, Garvey, Cabannes (c), Bonnefond, Grosso, Kirkpatrick, Kockott; Lazar, Rallier, Wihongi, Samson, Gray, Diarra, Faasalele, Wannenburg.

Replacements: Coetzee, Forestier, Peikrishvili, Ortega, Caballero, Tomas, Bai, Palis,

Ospreys: Fussell, Natoga, Isaacs, John, Hassler, Biggar, Webb; Bevington, Baldwin, Jarvis, AW Jones (c), King, Ardron, Tipuric, R Jones.

Replacements: Hibbard, Jones, Suter, Allen, Lewis, Habberfield, Morgan, Grabham.

Watch the Blues take on Glasgow on Sky Sports 1 on Friday evening, with coverage from 7.30pm. Or press the red button for Castres against the Ospreys.

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