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Leicester Tigers team news for Anglo-Welsh Cup opener

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International forwards Tomas Leonardi and Pat Cilliers are included in a Leicester Tigers squad for the first time in Friday’s opening game in the Anglo-Welsh Cup campaign away to Bath Rugby.

Argentina international Leonardi starts at No8 after joining the club during October, while South African prop Cilliers is named among the replacements after recovering from a groin injury.

Another international forward, Tom Croft, is included in the 23 for the first time this season after having the start of his campaign delayed by a back injury.

Matt Smith captains Tigers at The Recreation Ground, George Catchpole is given a starting place after scoring his first try for the club in the league game at Saracens last weekend, and Freddie Burns starts at fly-half.

Greg Bateman, who has already played at hooker and tighthead prop this season, starts at loosehead, while there is a first start of the season for flanker Will Evans and a first appearance for prop Fraser Balmain.

Fred Tuilagi, son of former Tigers wing Freddie, is included in a Tigers senior squad for the first time after gaining experience at Premiership ‘A’ League level and is in line to become the eighth member of the family to wear Leicester colours in a senior game.

Friday’s game is scheduled for live broadcast by BT Sport or keep in touch with the Tigers website or social media channels.

Leicester Tigers (v Bath Rugby, away, Friday 7.45pm)

15 George Worth
14 Tom Brady
13 Matt Smith (c)
12 Jack Roberts
11 George Catchpole
10 Freddie Burns
9 Jono Kitto

1 Greg Bateman
2 Harry Thacker
3 Fraser Balmain
4 Harry Wells
5 Joe Maksymiw
6 Luke Hamilton
7 Will Evans
8 Tomas Leonardi

Replacements
16 George McGuigan
17 Riccardo Brugnara
18 Pat Cilliers
19 Tom Croft
20 Fred Tuilagi
21 Sam Harrison
22 Oli Bryant
23 Charlie Thacker

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