Tom Curry returns to the Sale Sharks starting line-up alongside twin brother Ben as Alex Sanderson makes three changes to his side ahead of tomorrow afternoons clash with Exeter Chiefs at the AJ Bell Stadium. (Kick-off 3:00pm)
The England star replaces Jean-Luc du Preez at blindside after an impressive performance from the bench in round two whilst Sanderson’s other changes include the return of Conie Oosthuizen and a call-up for highly rated full-back Joe Carpenter. Leeds born Carpenter prepares for his Gallagher Premiership debut against the Chiefs after impressing in the Premiership Rugby Cup.
Simon McIntyre retains his spot at loose head as Bevan Rodd is eased back into action following an injury and is joined in the Sharks front-row by Springboks Akker van der Merwe and Coenie Oosthuizen. Oosthuizen steps in ahead of Nick Schonert who is currently serving a three-match ban for a dangerous tackle at The Rec.
Cobus Wiese and Johnny Hill remain as the Sharks’ lock pairing and provide plenty of power and experience for the Sale pack whilst Sanderson opts for a more mobile back row against the Chiefs. Tom Curry returns to action at blindside flanker and joins twin brother Ben and the imposing Daniel du Preez in the back row.
After an impressive start to the season, Gus Warr is named at scrum-half again and lines up alongside Robert du Preez for tomorrow’s match. The newly formed partnership will have their work cut out against a well-drilled Exeter back line but have the powers of Manu Tuilagi and Sam James in the midfield to help break down the former champion’s defence.
Tom O’Flaherty starts against his former side and is the oldest player in an electric Sharks back three as the former Exeter flyer is joined by in-form Tom Roebuck and debutant Joe Carpenter.
On the bench, Scotland international Ewan Ashman joins Beven Rodd and James Harper in a youthful bunch of front-row replacements, whilst Jono Ross and Jean-Luc du Preez provide huge experience and prowess as further forward cover.
Joe Simson, Sam Hill and Arron Reed cover the backs.