Joyce to lead Bristol against South Africa 'A'
TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Joe Joyce will captain Bristol Bears against South Africa ‘A’ in front of a record Ashton Gate crowd of 26 387.
The Bristolian lock partners Joe Batley in the engine room, with Yann Thomas, Bryan Byrne and Max Lahiff getting the nod in the front row.
Magnus Bradbury switches to blindside in a dynamic back row alongside Jake Heenan and Fitz Harding, with Will Porter and Callum Sheedy named flyhalf and scrumhalf respectively.
Sam Bedlow and Piers O’Conor combine in the midfield, with Gabriel Ibitoye and Deago Bailey joining Luke Morahan in an electric back three.
Bristol Bears: 15 Luke Morahan, 14 Deago Bailey, 13 Piers O’Conor, 12 Sam Bedlow, 11 Gabriel Ibitoye, 10 Callum Sheedy, 9 Will Porter, 8 Fitz Harding, 7 Jake Heenan, 6 Magnus Bradbury, 5 Joe Batley, 4 Joe Joyce (captain), 3 Max Lahiff, 2 Bryan Byrne, 1 Yann Thomas.
Replacements: 16 Harry Thacker, 17 Jake Woolmore, 18 Jonathan Benz-Salomon, 19 John Hawkins, 20 Sam Lewis, 21 Andy Uren, 22 Joe Jenkins, 23 Rich Lane.
Date: Thursday, November 17
Venue: Ashton Gate Stadium, Bristol
Kick-off: 19.30 (19.30 GMT; 21.30 SA time)
Referee: Gianluca Gnecchi (Italy)
Assistant referees: Ben Breakspear (Wales), Rhys Jones (Wales)
TMO: Ian Davies (Wales)
𝗢𝗰𝗰𝗮𝘀𝗶𝗼𝗻 𝗟𝗲𝘃𝗲𝗹: 💯
Hands up if you’re coming to @ashtongatestad on Thursday night? 🙋#BRIvSAA | #BristolBears pic.twitter.com/1aS26IDujB
— Bristol Bears 🐻 (@BristolBears) November 15, 2022