Lions trio on Ospreys bench for Treviso clash
BRITISH & Irish Lions trio Adam Jones, Richard Hibbard and Ian Evans have been named on the bench for the Ospreys’ RaboDirect Pro12 opener Treviso on Saturday (6.30pm).
Other Welsh regions such as the Scarlets and Blues have opted to rest their Lions, but the Ospreys have their big-hitters in reserve as they hope to avenge last season’s opening-weekend defeat to Treviso.
Another two of the Ospreys’ Lions contingent, captain Alun Wyn Jones and Justin Tipuric, have been left out of the matchday squad.
Wales veteran Ryan Jones captains the side at lock, while new signing Tito Tebaldi starts at scrum-half.
Flanker Tom Smith makes his first start since May 2012, while there is also a return from injury for centre Andrew Bishop.
“It’s a tough start,” said Ospreys head coach Steve Tandy.
“Treviso beat every Welsh team at home last season, and we lost twice out there, so we know that we have to be at our best from the very first whistle.”
Ospreys: R. Fussell; B. John, A. Bishop, A. Beck, E. Walker; D. Biggar, T. Tebaldi; R. Bevington, S. Baldwin, J. Rees, R. Jones (capt), J. King, T. Smith, J. Bearman, S. Lewis. Reps: R. Hibbard, D. Jones, A. Jones, I. Evans, M. Allen, T. Grabham, M. Morgan, J. Hassler.