TEAM NEWS – Exeter Chiefs v Sale Sharks

Sale Sharks have named their side to face Exeter Chiefs in the final round of the 20/21 Gallagher Premiership season. Alex Sanderson makes only four changes to his starting XV as the Sharks Director of Rugby looks to keep up his squad’s momentum as they prepare for their first play-off appearance in 15 years.  

 Manu Tuilagi make his first start for Sale in nine months after the centre’s late omission last weekend due to COVID-19 protocols. Manu joins British and Irish Lion Tom Curry as both internationals return to action for the Sharks at Sandy park this weekend.

Ross Harrison joins Springboks Akker van der Merwe and Coenie Oosthuizen in an unchanged Sharks front-row for the trip to Devon. Cobus Wiese replaces Josh Beaumont in the second row and takes his place alongside compatriot Jean-Luc du Preez for only the second time this season.

Cameron Neild’s Man of the Match performance against Harlequins in round 21 is rewarded with a second consecutive start against the Chiefs. The Altrincham-born flanker joins captain Tom Curry and Daniel du Preez is a mobile Sharks back row.

Faf De Klerk and AJ MacGinty continue in tandem as they continue to build one of the Premiership’s most clinical half back partnerships. The pair have the devastating power of Tuilagi at their disposal at 12, with the England international teaming up with Sam James at centre after being forced out of last week’s match.

Academy graduate Arron Reed gets his chance to shine as Sanderson names the winger in the Sharks starting line-up for the first time since round seventeen. Preston-born Reed is joined by Scotland International Byron McGuigan and Simon Hammersley in the Sale back three.

Curtis Langdon, Bevan Rodd and the departing Will-Griff John take their place on the Sharks bench as replacements for the front row, with James Phillips and Ben Curry providing further cover for the forwards.

Veteran scrum-half Will Cliff takes the number 21 shirt for the Sharks’ final match of the regular season and joins Robert du Preez and powerhouse Rohan Janse van Rensburg as cover for the backs.

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