Sale Sharks have named their side to take on Bath Rugby for their final game in the Aviva Premiership at the AJ Bell Stadium on Saturday at 4pm.
The Sharks are looking to finish the season on a high, following their back-to-back defeats in the competition. However, they know they face a challenge against a Bath side who still have an outside chance at qualifying for the semi-finals of the competition.
Ahead of the game, Diamond said: “We’re looking forward to it. It has been a disappointing season really, but no bigger than a game against Bath at home to round off your season. We’ve got a big crowd attending, let’s hope we get a consistent performance, which we’ve not had too many of. We want to go out there, and perform for the fans, and say this is what we’re about. There are a few people retiring and leaving the club after the game, so it’s a bit of a sad day as well.”
Diamond has opted to make six changes and a positional change to the side which lost last weekend to Leicester Tigers. In the front row, Ross Harrison switches to tighthead prop, and James Flynn starts his first Premiership game of the season at loosehead prop. In the second row, Andrei Ostrikov returns to the side, having withdrawn from the match day squad, with George Nott dropping to the bench. In the back row, Ben Curry partners twin Tom at flanker, with captain Josh Beaumont starting.
In the backs, Mike Phillips will be making his final appearance as a rugby player, partnering AJ MacGinty at half-back.
Byron McGuigan starts on the wing, with Josh Charnley moving to the bench, and Johnny Leota starts at inside centre, with Mark Jennings also moving to the replacements. Magnus Lund and Peter Stringer are also set to make their final appearances for the club, before moving on at the end of the season.
15. Mike Hale 14. Denny Solomona 13. Sam James 12. Johnny Leota 11. Byron McGuigan 10. AJ MacGinty 9. Mike Phillips 1. James Flynn2. Rob Webber 3. Ross Harrison 4. Bryn Evans 5. Andrei Ostrikov 6. Ben Curry 7. Tom Curry 8. Josh Beaumont (c)
Replacements: 16. Cameron Neild 17. Jake Pope 18. Diogo Ferreira 19. George Nott 20. Magnus Lund 21. Peter Stringer 22. Mark Jennings 23. Josh Charnley