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Hipkiss returns for Friday's trip to Bristol

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England international centre Dan Hipkiss is back in the Leicester Tigers line-up for Friday's Guinness Premiership game against Bristol at the Memorial Ground.

The recall of Hipkiss, after missing the last seven matches with injury, means a switch to the wing for Matt Smith and a move to full-back for Scott Hamilton in the absence of Geordan Murphy.

In the forwards, Mefin Davies takes over at hooker, Dan Cole is named at tighthead and Marco Wentzel comes into the back row.

There is a place on the bench for wing Tom Varndell who returns to club duty after playing at the IRB World Sevens in Dubai last weekend. Flanker Ben Herring returns to the matchday 22 after an eight-week injury absence.

Harry Ellis, Toby Flood, Tom Croft and Julian White are on international duty with England, while Martin Castrogiovanni, Benjamin Kayser and Geordan Murphy also have Six Nations commitments.

Johne Murphy (hamstring), Jordan Crane (knee), Brett Deacon (foot), Seru Rabeni (knee), Lewis Moody (ankle), Richard Blaze (foot) and Craig Newby (hamstring) are sidelined by injury. Martin Corry is unavailable due to suspension.

Leicester Tigers (v Bristol away, Friday 7.45pm)
15 Scott Hamilton
14 Matt Smith
13 Dan Hipkiss
12 Aaron Mauger (c)
11 Alesana Tuilagi
10 Sam Vesty
9 Julien Dupuy
1 Marcos Ayerza
2 Mefin Davies
3 Dan Cole
4 Louis Deacon
5 Ben Kay
6 Marco Wentzel
7 Ben Woods
8 Ben Pienaar

16 George Chuter
17 Santiago Bonorino
18 Dan Hemingway
19 Ben Herring
20 Ben Youngs
21 Derick Hougaard
22 Tom Varndell