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Thursday, 18 January, 2001, 14:56 GMT
Taylor misses Stade clash
Taylor on the charge in Swansea's first match with Stade
Mark Taylor's Six Nations place is in jeopardy
Mark Taylor has been ruled out of Swansea's Heineken Cup tie with Stade Francais on Saturday by injury.

The Swansea centre suffered posterior cruciate ligament damage in Wales' international against USA in November last year.

Taylor's place in Wales's opening Six Nations game against England now hangs in the balance as he has only the Heineken Cup quarter-final to prove his fitness.

And his absence will be a blow to Swansea who must win to secure a home tie in the quarter-finals.

Earlier in the week, Swansea coach John Plumtree had insisted he would not play an unfit Taylor and had pencilled in a fitness test for Friday in Paris.

But Taylor has not travelled with his team-mates.

The All Whites make just one change for the trip with Dean Thomas coming in for the injured Hywel Jenkins.

That leads to a reshuffle in the back row with Colin Charvis moving to blind side and Geraint Lewis to number eight.

Charvis, who was sent off in the clubs' bad-tempered clash at St Helen's, has warned his team-mates to expect a few "cheap shots" in the scrums from the French players.

The flanker expects to receive individual attention himself and his clash with Stade fly-half Diego Dominguez should be intriguing. Dominguez's collapse after Charvis' tackle led to the Swansea player's dismissal in October.

With feelings between the clubs already heated, the crucial nature of the clash will do little to cool things.

Both teams are virtually assured of a quarter-final place, but the winners will gain top seeding and a vital home draw.

The runners-up in the group will face a daunting away trip, likely to be to Munster or Leicester.


Teams -Stade Francais: tbc

Swansea: K Morgan, S Payne, S Winn, S Gibbs, M Robinson, A Thomas, S Martens, D Morris, G Jenkins, B Evans, T Maullin, A Moore, C Charvis, D Thomas, G Lewis
Replacements: R Jones, D Weatherly, C Anthony, G Mason, J Griffiths, L Jones

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