GLOUCESTER will launch themselves into a Guinness Premiership derby against Worcester Warriors tomorrow and welcome back two key members of Dean Ryan's squad.
Both Alex Brown and Olly Morgan return to the starting line-up following injuries and will be part of a vastly different team from the one that lost to Sale in the last round of matches.
Brown comes back following surgery on a fractured jaw sustained against Harlequins and will partner Marco Bortolami at lock.
But the return of Morgan is even more significant. The England full-back has been out of action since Gloucester's 31-7 Heineken Cup victory over Bourgoin in December because of a dislocated shoulder and has not played since.
"Obviously, we have missed Olly's contribution in the squad since his injury because he is a very good player," said head coach Dean Ryan. "We are approaching the end of the season; we have players back who have operated in different playing environments during the Six Nations and also from injury so we must kick on now.
"Guys like Morgan and Alex Brown will play key roles between now and the end of the season and it is great to have them back for what is such an important game tomorrow.
"This is something we are looking forward to - there has been real focus this week."
In total, there are 12 changes to the team that lost 22-16 to the Sharks. Only loose-head prop Nick Wood, hooker Andy Titterrell and Akapusi Qera retain their places - although Qera moves to the openside flank to accommodate Luke Narraway at number eight.
Alongside Wood and Titterrell, Carlos Nieto returns at tight-head. Skipper Bortolami returns at lock alongside Brown and he will make his first start since Gloucester's defeat against Bristol in February.
Alasdair Strokosch, one of Scotland's stand-out performers in the Six Nations, starts at six, Qera moves to seven and Narraway comes in at eight.
"We have options available and have selected the side accordingly to fit this specific fixture - nothing more than that," Ryan said. "The focus has been really good this week - we are not looking at anything else other than tomorrow's game and have put a group together we believe will be very competitive.
"Not only are Worcester hugely competitive but when they play some rugby are a huge threat - it should be a cracking contest.
"Considering the disruption we have faced over the last seven or eight weeks to be in a play-off place is testament to the squad and we must build on that now."
In the backs, only Anthony Allen retains his place from the defeat at Sale. Scrum-half Rory Lawson comes in and will partner Ryan Lamb at half-back. Lamb has not started since Gloucester's 28-20 win over Newcastle at the end of February because of a shoulder injury.
Alongside Allen, James Simpson-Daniel will move into the centre and look to add to his six tries in 12 Guinness Premiership appearances this season.
With Morgan's return to the back three, Iain Balshaw switches to the wing and Lesley Vainikolo will complete the line-up.
On the bench, Jeremy Paul and Alasdair Dickinson are the front row options; Will James will cover lock and Gareth Delve number eight.
The back replacements are scrum-half Gareth Cooper, utility back Willie Walker and Scotland international Chris Paterson.
GLOUCESTER (v Worcester, tomorrow 3pm): Olly Morgan; Iain Balshaw, James Simpson-Daniel, Anthony Allen, Lesley Vainikolo; Ryan Lamb, Rory Lawson; Nick Wood, Andy Titterrell, Carlos Nieto, Marco Bortolami (capt), Alex Brown, Alasdair Strokosch, Akapusi Qera, Luke Narraway. Reps: Jeremy Paul, Alasdair Dickinson, Will James, Gareth Delve, Gareth Cooper, Willie Walker, Chris Paterson.
Speaking to the local media, Bill Meakes this week explained how he was relishing the challenge against Harlequins at Kingsholm, and that he is enjoying the opportunity to develop his game time, and repaying the faith from the Cherry and White coaches
Gloucester look to build upon the local derby win over Bath last weekend with Harlequins the visitors to Kingsholm on Saturday (kick off 3pm). Director of Rugby David Humphreys is expecting a close game with the two teams well matched, although it may not be a 78 point thriller like the last time the two teams met.
Named Man of the Match by BT Sport, scrum-half Willi Heinz said after the 15-11 win at Bath on Friday evening that it was a pretty happy Gloucester dressing room and reward for a lot of hard work put in during the week leading up to the game.
Speaking after the 15-11 win over Bath at the Rec on Friday evening, David Humphreys heaped praise on his players, pointing out how they had bounced back after last week's tough defeat to overcome a rough start before controlling the game and earning the win.
Gloucester Rugby hooker Richard Hibbard spoke to the local media this week as the Cherry and Whites prepare to face Bath Rugby in the Aviva Premiership. The Welshman is ready to bounce back at The Rec.
Speaking to the local media about the local derby against Bath at the Rec on Friday evening, Director of Rugby David Humphreys acknowledged that it will be a tough encounter but hugely exciting at the same time and one the squad are looking forward to.
A visibly disappointed Billy Twelvetrees admitted that it was a very sombre Gloucester dressing room as a last minute try and conversion condemned the Cherry and Whites to an 18-19 defeat against Leicester Tigers on Saturday.
A disappointed Tom Savage told GRTV, after the 18-19 defeat at home to the Leicester Tigers, that the whole Gloucester team had put in a fantastic effort, but just couldn't find the extra one or two percent necessary to put away a top side.
After a disappointing opening weekend loss to their Scottish counterparts, England U20s will be eager to bounce back in Italy this evening, with Gloucester flyer Mat Protheroe set to pull the strings from fly half.
Gloucester Rugby make just the one change to the starting line up that won at Bath last Friday evening, flanker Matt Kvesic restored to the starting XV as the Cherry and Whites welcome Harlequins to Kingsholm in the Aviva Premiership on Saturday (kick off 3pm).
The Early Bird deadline for ticket purchases for the Aviva Premiership fixture against Harlequins on Saturday will expire at 6:30pm on Thursday evening, with tickets already limited for one area of Kingsholm.