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Several USA players get back in action, or make debuts this weekend as overseas pros.
Italy Super League. Top pro league in Italy. No USA players at present.
Japan Top League. Just as it sounds, the pro league in
Japan. USA players: Todd Clever (Suntory Sungoliath)
Amlin Challenge Cup. A second-tier pan-European competition featuring teams from all over Europe parallel to other leagues.
Scott LaValla will make his first start as a professional, running on at lock for Stade Francais (Top 14) against Lyon. Inaki Basauri is on the bench for Perigoux (Pro D2) against Albi in what will be his first match for the club.
Meanwhile several players returning to their old clubs will make their first starts or appearances of the season. Mike MacDonald helped Leeds (RFU Championships) to a victory over London Scottish last week, and now starts for the team at loosehead prop. Robbie Shaw, who seems to have now established himself as the starting scrumhalf at Leeds, runs on at #9.
Shawn Pittman makes his first start for London Welsh (RFU Championship) as they take on Rotherham. Pittman will run on at loosehead prop.
Hayden Smith is on the bench for his first appearance for Saracens (Aviva Premiership) this season. Chris Wyles is not in the 22, and on the other side in this LV= Cup fixture, Samu Manoa gets his first rest for Northampton, denying fans a USA v. USA clash at lock.
Another USA v. USA matchup is not to be, as Nottingham takes on the Cornish Pirates in a Championship match. Neither Nottingham scrumhalf Tim Usasz nor Pirates center Andrew Suniula are playing. Also absent from their 22s are Kevin Swyrin at Agen (Top 14) and Seta Tuilevuka at Montpellier (Top 14).
Who is starting, and much to the relief of Biarritz (Top 14) is star wing Taku Ngwenya.