27th Jun, 2019

Du Preez to return for Challenge Cup clash

Correspondent 29th Mar, 2019 Updated: 29th Mar, 2019

SCOTLAND flanker Cornell du Preez will make his comeback from a fractured larynx in Warriors’ European Challenge Cup quarter-final against Harlequins at Sixways on Saturday (kick-off 8.15pm).

Du Preez suffered the injury five minutes into his Warriors debut against Wasps on September 1 in an accidental collision with Joe Launchbury.

Du Preez lost his speech and spent six weeks in hospital in Birmingham and he was not expected to play again this season.

But he resumed training in January and was recently given the all-clear to take contact again. After two weeks of full training Du Preez has now been named among the replacements for Warriors’ first European quarter-final in ten years.

Former South Africa scrum-half Francois Hougaard will lead Worcester out on his 50th appearance for the club.

Hougaard, 30, joined Warriors in February 2016 from the Blue Bulls and has played 46 times for the Springboks, most recently against New Zealand 18 months ago.

Wing Bryce Heem returns after he missed last week’s Gallagher Premiership win at Bristol Bears to attend the birth of his first child, daughter Alba.

Heem replaces Josh Adams, who is rested following his recent exertions in Wales’ Grand Slam campaign, and Duncan Weir starts at fly-half in place of Jono Lance who sustained a head injury at Bristol.

There are four changes in the pack with Gareth Milasinovich starting at tighthead, Pierce Phillips partnering Michael Fatialofa in the second row and Carl Kirwan and Matt Cox recalled in the back row.

Warriors

15 Chris Pennell

14 Tom Howe

13 Ben Te’o

12 Ryan Mills (c)

11 Bryce Heem

10 Duncan Weir

9 Francois Hougaard

1 Callum Black

2 Niall Annett

3 Gareth Milasinovich

4 Michael Fatialofa

5 Pierce Phillips

6 Carl Kirwan

7 Sam Lewis

8 Matt Cox

Replacements

16 Joe Taufete’e

17 Ethan Waller

18 Simon Kerrod

19 Darren Barry

20 Cornell du Preez

21 Michael Heaney

22 Scott van Breda

23 Francois Venter

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