HEAD coach Dean Ryan has named a side containing six full internationals for tomorrow's European Challenge Cup pool match against Romanian side Bucuresti at Kingsholm (3pm).
The Gloucester boss has hardly deviated from the side that began the competition with a 26-10 victory in Bayonne last weekend.
Skipper Phil Vickery, hooker Mefin Davies, lock Quinton Davids, flanker Andy Hazell and centres Mike Tindall and James Simpson-Daniel are all named in an experienced line-up.
Ryan has made only three changes from last Saturday's starting XV. Nick Wood gets a run at loosehead prop in place of Patrice Collazo, who moves to the bench. Luke Narraway starts at number eight in place of James Forrester and Marcel Garvey has the opportunity to press for regular first team rugby after replacing Mark Foster.
But Ryan admitted his side face something of the unknown tomorrow against opponents they know little about.
"We know very little about them - apart from the fact they ran Toulon very close last weekend," Ryan said. "But we anticipate them setting up very much like a French side.
"They will have big men, be very physical up front and have some pace out-wide. We have to be very focused and keep our concentration and play to a style we know we are good at.
"We are treating this game like we would Bayonne or Toulon because we can afford no mistakes."
Narraway gets the chance to start at number eight but both flankers - Peter Buxton and Hazell - retain their positions. Hazell has recovered from a dead arm picked up in Bayonne, while Forrester is on the bench but he has also shaken off a dead leg.
Hooker Rob Elloway gets a chance on the bench in place of James Parkes and lock Mark Cornwell also returns to the squad.
Anthony Allen is preferred to Terry Fanolua, who is still restricted by a knee injury. Scrum-half Peter Richards is also included.
"As a club, we are concentrating solely on our own performance," Ryan said. "We just want to get that right and this weekend is another important step towards that.
"We have a strong squad and it will be good to see the likes of Luke Narraway and Marcel Garvey in the first team."
GLOUCESTER (v Bucuresti, Kingsholm, Saturday 3pm): Olly Morgan; Rob Thirlby, James Simpson-Daniel, Mike Tindall, Marcel Garvey; Ludovic Mercier, Haydn Thomas; Nick Wood, Mefin Davies, Phil Vickery (capt), Adam Eustace, Quinton Davids, Peter Buxton, Andy Hazell, Luke Narraway. Reps: Rob Elloway, Patrice Collazo, Mark Cornwell, James Forrester, Peter Richards, Anthony Allen, Simon Amor.
Speaking after the 37-8 European Rugby Challenge Cup win over Benetton Treviso, James Hook admitted that the Italian side made things tough for Gloucester at times but that the Cherry and Whites are happy to take the bonus point win and turn their focus to Northampton next week.
Speaking to GRTV after the game, Backs Coach Tim Taylor was happy with the squad as they cruised to victory over Treviso. The result wasn't in doubt, but the Cherry and Whites laboured to secure a crucial try bonus point.
Speaking to the local media this week, Gloucester Rugby centre Matt Scott is excited to take the field again as the Cherry and Whites look to build on the win in Bayonne when Treviso come to Kingsholm this Saturday.
Defence Coach Jonny Bell admitted this week that the European Rugby Challenge Cup victory in Bayonne was a welcome one, stressed that Benetton Treviso will pose a tough test on Saturday at Kingsholm but that Gloucester are determined to deliver in front of their own fans.
Motu Matu'u is looking to make up for lost time this week as the Cherry and Whites head to Basque Country to take on Bayonne in the European Rugby Challenge Cup opener. The Samoan hooker made his first appearance in the jersey last weekend, and is hoping to contribute to the team this weekend.
Gloucester's attentions turn to Europe this weekend as they travel to Bayonne for their opening fixture of this season's European Rugby Challenge Cup. Forwards Coach Trevor Woodman told GRTV that the Cherry and Whites will be aiming to top their pool as they've done for the past two seasons, but is well aware of how tough it is to win in France.
Although understandably disappointed at seeing victory slip away at the last minute, Ben Morgan said after the game at Exeter that there were plenty of positives that Gloucester could take from the game.
Gloucester made it two wins from two outings in this season's European Rugby Challenge Cup as they outplayed Benetton Treviso at Kingsholm to win by 37 points to 8, the bonus point try coming with the final play of the game.