Sale Sharks name team to face Scarlets
Number eight Josh Strauss has recovered from the injury sustained at Gloucester in December and returns to lead the side at Parc y Scarlets on Friday (kick off 7.05pm).
For the final Anglo Welsh Cup encounter this season, fellow forwards Ross Harrison, Rob Webber and Ben Curry return after a brief rest, whilst the James brothers – Sam and Luke – are named together in the starting fifteen for the first time. Cameron Redpath starts at inside centre.
Team: 15.Mike Haley; 14. Josh Charnley, 13. Luke James, 12.Cameron Redpath, 11. Marland Yarde; 10. Sam James, 9. Will Cliff; 1. Ross Harrison, 2. Rob Webber, 3. WillGriff John, 4. Bryn Evans, 5. Josh Beaumont, 6. TJ Ioane, 7. Ben Curry, 8. Josh Strauss (capt.)
Replacements: 16. Curtis Langdon, 17. James Flynn, 18.Halani Aulika, 19. Matt Postlethwaite, 20.Nic Dolly, 21.Faf De Klerk, 22. Kieran Wilkinson, 23. Arron Reed.
Ten Scarlets have been announced in the Wales team facing Scotland in Cardiff on Saturday afternoon, with two more on the bench.
Looking ahead to Friday’s game in South Wales, Sharks’ Defence Coach Mike Forshaw declared, “I’ve said to the boys that we’ve got to look at Friday as a final pre-season game before we start the Premiership.
“There are 10 games left this season and the first one this Friday is in the Anglo-Welsh and then it’s all systems go as we head back into the Premiership for the final nine games in the league.
“If we are going to have a serious assault at finishing as high in the table as we can, then we can’t go to Scarlets as if it’s a damp squib of a game.
“Some lads have had a bit of time off and we need to have a good hit-out on Friday, have a weekend off and then, bang, we’re into the London Irish build-up.
“Whatever team Scarlets pick on Friday night, they are going to come for us. It’s going to be physical and intimidating so for us mentally to stand up to it and get something out of the game will be a great stepping stone leading into the Irish match.”