Fresh from their opening round Champions Cup win at Dragons, Wasps have made five changes to their starting line-up to host Montpellier in round two on Friday at the Ricoh Arena. International quartet Dan Robson, Will Rowlands, Jack Willis and Joe Launchbury are all rested, Will Porter, Tim Cardall, Ben Morris and James Gaskell respectively taking their places.
The other change sees Ben Harris return from injury to start at loosehead prop in place of the benched Tom West. Tom Willis, meanwhile, also makes his way back from the injury he picked up against Gloucester in November, to take his place amongst the replacements.
Speaking ahead of the round two Champions Cup game, Wasps boss Lee Blackett said: “Our international players were keen to play, but they have to have a mandated amount of rest and we thought it was better to give them a well-deserved break with a busy period to come.
“We have spoken before about being adaptable. It is key over this period that we keep on being adaptable. We can’t use anything as an excuse and we definitely won’t be. I’m pleased with the result at the weekend. Our performance was definitely better than what it had been. We’re moving in the right direction.
“Montpellier are a big physical team that are very confrontational and are going to come at you. They are one of the heaviest sides in the Top 14 and they’ve got internationals throughout.
A couple of late tries from the forwards helped @WaspsRugby on their way to an important Round 1 victory ?
— Heineken Champions Cup (@ChampionsCup) December 13, 2020
“In their last away game, they went away and beat Clermont. I thought they were outstanding. That was them at their best. It will be about not allowing them to impose their game on us and us trying to impose our game on them.”
WASPS (vs Montpellier, Friday)
15 Lima Sopoaga (47)
14 Zach Kibirige (30)
13 Paolo Odogwu (12)
12 Jimmy Gopperth (110)
11 Josh Bassett (131)
10 Charlie Atkinson (4)
9 Will Porter (21)
1 Ben Harris (66)
2 Tom Cruse (86)
3 Kieran Brookes (45)
4 Tim Cardall (23)
5 James Gaskell (124)
6 Ben Morris (32)
7 Thomas Young (124)
8 Alfie Barbeary (10)
16 Gabriel Oghre (31)
17 Tom West (38)
18 Jeff Toomaga-Allen (25)
19 Levi Douglas (4)
20 Tom Willis (24)
21 Ben Vellacott (10)
22 Michael Le Bourgeois (39)
23 Matteo Minozzi (21)
- Watch European Rugby on BT Sport. Click here to buy now
“With all the stories coming from the ex-players you cannot rush these things and I will never try to come back quickly again from a concussion"
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) December 16, 2020
Sign up to our mailing list for a weekly digest from the wide world of rugby.Sign Up Now