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Rugby Union: Davies has chance to impress.

Byline: BY IAN HARGRAVES

LANCASHIRE kick-off another major rugby union campaign at Preston this afternoon, in the hope of eventually managing to gain their fifth national title in seven years.

They will certainly start favourites against newly-promoted Warwickshire, as they not only have a most impressive county record but appear to be fielding an even stronger side than usual. Initially, Waterloo only provided two members of the starting team, but with full back Mark Riley from Sedgeley Park failing a fitness test, their up-and-coming flyhalf Alex Davies has been promoted to make his debut instead, with Waterloo's former flyhalf Steve Nutt switching to full back.

Waterloo's former versatile back Neil Hunter appears on the bench.

Davies has looked his club's outstanding player this season and will enjoy the chance to play behind some dynamic forwards, which should enable him to demonstrate his attacking skills, the only snag being that if he does too well, one or two of the big clubs may move in for him, at Waterloo's expense.

Incidentally, one of the spectators today will be the Waterloo coach, Chris O'Callaghan, who seems likely to be re-signing for his club shortly, despite reports that he was about to move on.

LANCASHIRE: Steve Nutt (Fylde); Nick Royle (Fylde), Oliver Brennan (Fylde), Chris Brears (Sedgeley Park), James Duffy (Waterloo), captain; Alex Davies (Waterloo), James Doherty (Wharfedale); P Du Plessis (Sedgeley Park), Peter Ince (Waterloo), Nick Flynn (Manchester), Roger Banks (Fylde), Lewis McGowan (Rotherham), Seb Moss (Manchester), Devin Dewhurst (Preston), John Cross (Sedgeley Park).
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Date:May 3, 2008
Words:252
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