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Tom Tainton


Posted Friday, January 17th 2020

Team news: Zebre vs Bristol Bears

Henry Purdy is included in the matchday squad and could make his competitive debut from the bench as Bristol Bears aim for top seeding in the European Challenge Cup on Saturday (2pm KO GMT).

  • Lam makes eight changes for final pool clash
  • Bristol can secure top seed in competition with win
  • Bears unbeaten in Challenge Cup
  • Henry Purdy listed among replacements

Director of Rugby Pat Lam makes eight changes to the side that overcame Brive last weekend and secured a home quarter final in the process.

Bristol – who have won all five of their pool stage fixtures so far – can secure the first seed with victory at Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi.

Toby Fricker, Andy Uren and Ian Madigan come into the backline for the pool four encounter, while Will Capon, Lewis Thiede, Ed Holmes, Jake Heenan and Nathan Hughes are named in the pack.

“Our goal was to achieve top seeding in the competition. We want to win and that’s all that we have been focusing on.”

Director of Rugby, Pat Lam

Lam said: “Our goal was to achieve top seeding in the competition. We want to win and that’s all that we have been focusing on.

“Zebre are a good side, in a rich vein of form with sixteen internationals, they tested us in the first game at Ashton Gate. We’ll go there prepared and ready for a tough battle.”

Tom Pincus is also included among the replacements and could make his first outing in Europe this season if called upon from the bench.

Bristol Bears team to face Zebre at Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi on Saturday, January 18th (2pm KO GMT):

15. Mat Protheroe; 14. Luke Morahan, 13. Alapati Leiua, 12. Ian Madigan, 11. Toby Fricker; 10. Callum Sheedy (co-capt), 9. Andy Uren; 1. Jake Woolmore, 2. Will Capon, 3. Lewis Thiede, 4. Ed Holmes, 5. Joe Joyce, 6. Luke Hamilton, 7. Jake Heenan (co-capt), 8. Nathan Hughes.

Replacements: 16. Harry Thacker, 17. Ollie Dawe, 18. Nicky Thomas, 19. John Hawkins, 20. Steven Luatua, 21. Harry Randall, 22. Henry Purdy, 23. Tom Pincus.

Unavailable: Yann Thomas (achilles), John Afoa (ribs), Max Lahiff (shoulder), Chris Vui (illness), Adrian Choat (ankle), Siale Piutau (knee), Jack Bates (hamstring), Luke Daniels (shoulder), Will Hurrell (head), Sam Bedlow (shoulder), Charles Piutau (knee), Piers O’Conor (knee), Charlie Powell (ankle).