Sale Sharks have named their side to take on RC Toulon in the European Rugby Champions Cup this Friday night at the AJ Bell Stadium (kick off 7.45pm).
Steve Diamond has made five changes to his side which lost to Scarlets in the opening round of the European Rugby Champions Cup. Mark Jennings is set to make his first appearance of the season.
Sam James starts at fly-half for the first time this season. Peter Stringer has recovered from his bicep injury to start a game for the first time since the side’s draw to Worcester Warriors in September.
Magnus Lund also starts a game for the first time this season, replacing David Seymour, and Andrei Ostrikov comes into the second row, replacing Jonathan Mills.
Reflecting on the side’s big clash, Diamond said: “In football terms it’s a bit like Barcelona coming to town, because Toulon are the biggest club in world rugby and we’ll see how good they are on Friday night.
“The players have got a gameplan to put in place and if they get that right and put in a really good performance, then perhaps we’ll get win. By virtue of us not losing many games over the last four years at home, it makes it a difficult place for sides to come to.
“Toulon were beaten last week taking no points so the pressure is on them really. We’ve just got to do what we do well and perform at the highest level and if we do that we’ve got a chance.”
Sale Sharks: 15. Mike Haley, 14. Byron McGuigan, 13. Will Addison, 12. Mark Jennings, 11. Paolo Odogwu, 10. Sam James, 9. Peter Stringer, 1. Ross Harrison, 2. Neil Briggs, 3. Brian Mujati, 4. Bryn Evans, 5. Andrei Ostrikov, 6. Cameron Neild, 7. Magnus Lund, 8. Josh Beaumont (c)
Replacements: 16. Eifion Lewis-Roberts, 17. Halani Aulika, 18. Jonathan Mills, 19. David Seymour, 20. Tom Curry, 21. James Mitchell, 22. Dan Mugford, 23. Sam Bedlow