Ospreys team to face ASM Clermont Auvergne

The Ospreys team to ASM Clermont Auvergne on Saturday 16th January 2010 at Stade Marcel Michelin, kick off at 4.45pm (local time), will be as follows:-

15 Lee Byrne

14 Tommy Bowe
13 Sonny Parker
12 Andrew Bishop
11 Nikki Walker
10 Dan Biggar
9 Ricky Januarie
1 Paul James
2 Richard Hibbard
3 Adam Jones
4 Alun-Wyn Jones
5 Jonathan Thomas
6 Jerry Collins
7 Marty Holah
8 Ryan Jones (Capt)
16 Huw Bennett
17 Ryan Bevington
18 Cai Griffiths
19 Ian Gough
20 Filo Tiatia
21 Jamie Nutbrown
22 James Hook
23 Shane Williams
Ospreys Head Coach, Sean Holley, commented:

"We face a team who are one of the leading sides in Europe and who are coming into the game in a rich vein of form. They've been on a good run lately and picked up some good wins, most notably away to Toulouse last weekend which put them top in the T14 so we know the size of the challenge that we are up against on Saturday afternoon. We've had a good look at their strengths and weaknesses, and it's been interesting viewing to be honest. They've got a good set-piece game and they like to play attacking rugby using their big, strong backs. We know that we are going to be put under pressure by them and their passionate supporters, but we have to stand up to that.
"It's what this competition is all about, you want to be testing yourself against the best, and there's no doubt in mind that description fits our opponents on the weekend. It doesn't get any bigger, or more difficult, than the challenge we face over the next two weeks, against the form team in France, and the form team in England at the Liberty Stadium next weekend.
"We've been strengthened going into the game by the return of some important players to the squad, who have big game experience, and that is something that we will need on Saturday, along with self belief and a strong character. We've put together a good run of results ourselves over the last couple of months without actually hitting the levels where we want to be at week in week out, and where we need to be on Saturday if we are going to get anything from the game. We've focussed on getting that right since our last game against the Blues, getting consistency into our game and becoming more clinical. We know that we have to raise our game significantly if the work done to get to this point isn't to be wasted, and that is the challenge for us all, players and coaches, right now.
"We're just pleased that the work we have done up to this point means that we can go into these two games in a good position and with a real say in how this Pool pans out and who progresses to the knockout stages. They are mouth watering games and as a group we are relishing the challenge."

The following players were not considered because of injury:

Craig Mitchell - fractured rib
Duncan Jones - broken bone in foot
Mike Phillips - ankle ligament
Tom Isaacs - shoulder
Conor McInerney - knee
Lyndon Bateman – knee
Scott Baldwin - hernia
Forthcoming Fixtures
Sat 16th Jan - Clermont Auvergne V Ospreys - Heineken Cup - Stade Marcel Michelin  4.45pm
Sat 23rd Jan - Ospreys V Leicester Tigers - Heineken Cup - Liberty Stadium - 1.35pm
Fri 29th Jan - Newport Gwent Dragons V Ospreys - LV= Cup - Rodney Parade - 7.30pm                    
Thurs 4th Feb - Ospreys V Leeds Carnegie - LV= Cup - Liberty Stadium - 7.30pm                                   
Sun 21st Feb - Ospreys V Connacht - Magners League - Liberty Stadium - 5.00pm