Banner image

Team news: Bristol Rugby vs Leinster 'A'

Olly Robinson returns from his loan spell at Cardiff Blues to start in the back row as Bristol face Leinster ‘A’ on Friday (7.45pm KO).

  • Eight internationals named in B&I Cup line-up
  • Eleven aged 24 or under in matchday squad
  • Average age of starting line-up is 27 years old
  • Sam Graham set for competitive debut

Only three players remain in the starting line-up from the side that overcame Doncaster Knights, as Bristol ring the changes for the B&I Cup clash.

Mat Protheroe, Alapati Leiua and Ryan Bevington are retained, while the hosts include David Lemi in a backline that contains four internationals.

In the pack, Giorgi Nemsadze is set for his first competitive outing of the campaign, while Sam Graham (Chippenham RFC) is set for his competitive debut after impressing in the A-League.

Nick Fenton-Wells makes his Bristol bow at hooker following his positional switch, while Sione Faletau and Jack Lam also earn starts at Ashton Gate.

Head coach Pat Lam said: “Leinster are traditionally one of the strongest sides in the B&I Cup competition, so we’re relishing that challenge.

“There’s plenty of opportunities for guys coming into the side this weekend and – under the lights at Ashton Gate – they will be eager to make an impression.”

Bristol Rugby team to face Leinster ‘A’ at Ashton Gate on Friday, 8 December (7.45pm KO):

15. Mat Protheroe; 14. David Lemi, 13. Alapati Leiua, 12. Siale Piutau (c), 11. Tom Varndell; 10. Callum Sheedy, 9. Andy Uren; 1. Ryan Bevington, 2. Nick Fenton-Wells, 3. Sione Faletau, 4. Giorgi Nemsadze, 5. Joe Batley, 6. Sam Graham, 7. Olly Robinson, 8. Jack Lam.

Replacements: 16. Ben Gompels, 17. Jack Cosgrove, 18. Ollie Dawe, 19. Joe Joyce, 20. Rhodri Williams, 21. Billy Searle, 22. Jack Tovey.

UNAVAILABLE: Max Crumpton (knee), Ross McMillan (hamstring), Jordon Liney (ankle), Tyler Gendall (knee), John Hawkins (knee), Joe Latta (ankle), Dan Tuohy (shoulder), Ehize Ehizode (shoulder), Steven Luatua (ribs), Nick Haining (shoulder), James Dun (knee), James Newey (ankle), Thretton Palamo (foot), Sam Bedlow (ankle), Luke Morahan (hamstring).