GLOUCESTER'S head coach Dean Ryan will hand starts to loose-head prop Patrice Collazo and hooker Olivier Azam to complete an all-French front row against Leicester tomorrow.
The pair will make their first starts of the season at Welford Road in place of Nick Wood and Mefin Davies respectively and will be joined by tight-head prop Christian Califano as Gloucester aim to continue their 100% start to the season.
Will James, the former Cornish Pirates second row, will start in the second row alongside Marco Bortolami in place of the injured Alex Brown, who broke an arm in the 31-21 victory over Harlequins last weekend.
James's inclusion is the only other change to the Gloucester starting line-up, which means no places for Mike Tindall (calf) or Iain Balshaw (ankle).
However, Ryan has made changes to the bench. Ludovic Mercier is not considered for selection after damaging a knee in the Guinness A League encounter against Bath on Monday, which means Brad Davies is recalled from his loan at Pertemps Bees.
Both Adam Eustace and Jake Boer come into the squad for the first time this season as Gloucester opt for five forwards and two backs on the bench. Boer returns after recovering from ligament damage to his knee and replaces Luke Narraway.
Explaining his decision on Azam and Collazo, Ryan told www.gloucesterrugby.co.uk "We see this weekend as an opportunity for other people to put forward their cases in the side. We have only just started a very long season and we need to give our established players the chance to press their claims."
The backline remains unchanged for the second match running which means Peter Richards, a try scorer last weekend, partners Willie Walker at half-back. Rudi Keil and Anthony Allen are in the centre, while James Bailey, Mark Foster and Olly Morgan complete the back three.
Leicester lost against Bath last weekend but Ryan is anticipating a tough afternoon tomorrow.
"Welford Road is a tough place to go and we know we will be facing a side reacting very strongly to a disappointment last weekend," Ryan said.
"From our point of view, I think Harlequins told us we have a lot to work on as a team. We scored two very good tries through individuals but we have to be much better than that in more areas.
"We have a group of individuals who deal with pressure and expectation each week and I am sure we will be facing that tomorrow. We know we have to match them physically in certain areas but we are looking forward to what should be a fantastic game."
GLOUCESTER (v Leicester, tomorrow, Welford Road, 3pm): Olly Morgan; James Bailey, Rudi Keil, Anthony Allen, Mark Foster; Willie Walker, Peter Richards; Patrice Collazo, Olivier Azam, Christian Califano, Will James, Marco Bortolami (capt), Peter Buxton, Andy Hazell, James Forrester. Reps: Mefin Davies, Jack Forster, Nick Wood, Adam Eustace, Jake Boer, Brad Davies, Rory Lawson.
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.
Speaking after the narrow loss to Leicester Tigers on Saturday afternoon, David Humphreys says despite there being a lot of good in Gloucester's performance, he rued the failure to close the game out, as well as thanking the home support
Kiwi second row Jeremy Thrush is thoroughly enjoying his time in Cherry and White so far, and this weekend the Leicester Tigers are the visitors to Kingsholm, and the All Black is massively excited about the challenge.
After two wins in the European Rugby Challenge Cup, securing a home quarter-final, David Humphreys told the local media this week that Gloucester are coming into Saturday's game in good physical shape having rotated the squad. However, he and the squad are prepared for a tough encounter against the Tigers.
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.