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Leicester Tigers team to face Bath Rugby

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Senior internationals Geordan Murphy, Ben Kay and Derick Hougaard return from injury to take their place in the Leicester Tigers starting XV for Sunday's Guinness Premiership match against league leaders Bath Rugby at Welford Road.

Murphy missed the draw against Harlequins at Twickenham last weekend but returns to claim the No15 shirt, with Scott Hamilton switching to the wing, while Kay partners captain Martin Corry in  the second row.

South Africa international Hougaard is named at fly-half in place of Toby Flood who is rested as part of the England Elite Squad agreement.

With head coach Heyneke Meyer returning to South Africa on compassionate leave, assistant Richard Cockerill leads the coaching team and said: “Bath have been playing well and the two clubs have had a great rivalry over the years so we expect another tough contest in front of another big Welford Road crowd.”

Marcos Ayerza and Richard Blaze are sidelined by injury, while Louis Deacon, Alesana Tuilagi, Ben Woods and Ben Pienaar are closing in on a return to action.

Leicester Tigers (v Bath Rugby, Welford Road, Sunday January 4, 1.30pm)
15 Geordan Murphy
14 Scott Hamilton
13 Danny Hipkiss
12 Aaron Mauger
11 Matt Smith
10 Derick Hougaard
9 Julien Dupuy
1 Boris Stankovich
2 Benjamin Kayser
3 Julian White
4 Martin Corry (captain)
5 Ben Kay
6 Tom Croft
7 Lewis Moody
8 Jordan Crane

16 George Chuter
17 Martin Castrogiovanni
18 Marco Wentzel
19 Craig Newby
20 Ben Youngs
21 Seru Rabeni
22 Johne Murphy