Cape Town - Former Springbok captain Jean de Villiers has
been picked on the bench for Leicester Tigers in their Aviva Premiership clash
against Harlequins at The Twickenham Stoop on Friday evening.
De Villiers, who retired from international rugby after
breaking his jaw during last year’s World Cup, joined the Tigers in October
2015 but a subsequent calf injury prevented him from making his debut for the
Meanwhile, Manu Tuilagi, Brendon O'Connor and Ed Slater also
return from injury to start against Harlequins.
Tuilagi has missed the last three games with a hamstring
strain, while O'Connor makes his first appearance since the derby match against
Northampton Saints in early January. Club captain Slater returns after a
seven-week absence with a knee injury.
Mathew Tait reverts to fullback to accommodate the return of
Tuilagi at centre, with Telusa Veainu joining Peter Betham on the wings.
Slater is joined by Mike Fitzgerald in the second row, with
Laurence Pearce following his try-scoring appearance at Newcastle Falcons last
week with a recall to the back row alongside Tom Croft and O'Connor.
Kick-off is scheduled for 21:45 SA time (19:45 London time)
15 Mathew Tait, 14 Peter Betham, 13 Matt Smith, 12 Manu
Tuilagi, 11 Telusa Veainu, 10 Freddie Burns, 9 Sam Harrison, 8 Laurence Pearce,
7 Brendon O’Connor, 6 Tom Croft, 5 Mike Fitzgerald, 4 Ed Slater (captain), 3
Fraser Balmain, 2 Leonardo Ghiraldini, 1 Marcos Ayerza
Substitutes: 16 Harry Thacker, 17 Riccardo Brugnara, 18
Logovi'i Mulipola, 19 Graham Kitchener, 20 Jordan Crane, 21 Jono Kitto, 22 Oli
Bryant, 23 Jean de Villiers
15 Ross Chisholm, 14 Marland Yarde, 13 Winston Stanley, 12
Harry Sloan, 11 Tim Visser, 10 Ben Botica, 9 Tito Tebaldi, 8 Nick Easter, 7
Luke Wallace, 6 Mat Luamanu, 5 Charlie Matthews, 4 James Horwill (captain), 3
Adam Jones, Dave Ward, 1 Mark Lambert
Substitutes: 16 Rob Buchanan, 17 Owen Evans, 18 Kyle
Sinckler, 19 George Merrick, 20 James Chisholm, 21 Sam Egerton, 22 Tim Swiel,
23 Matt Hopper