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RUGBY: Donald set for return
4:30pm Thursday 20th September 2012 in Sport
BATH coach Brad Davis believes the impending return of World Cup winner Stephen Donald will give the club a welcome selection headache in the key number 10 shirt.
Donald, who kicked the winning points for New Zealand in last year’s World Cup final against France, missed the opening three games of the season with an achilles problem picked up in pre-season.
Davis revealed the 28-year-old was likely to be in contention for tomorrow’s visit to bottom side London Irish (3pm), although Olly Barkley has been a star performer in the fly-half jersey so far.
Youngster Tom Heathcote is also close to a comeback, handing Bath a number of options for the playmaker’s role - although Barkley's impending departure to French side Racing will reduce those.
“Stephen is close,’’ said Davis “It’s pleasing when we get more players out on the paddock.
“Until he had his Achilles strain, he was training the house down and a fit Stephen Donald is a great asset for any side.
He added: “It’s up to the guys coming back from injury to push Olly (Barkley) out of that shirt.
“He’s got the guys around the park, kicked his goals and his game-management has been spot on. I’m really pleased for Olly because he had a big setback last year with his injury.
“But he had a great pre-season and really hit the ground running. A fully-fit Olly Barkley is one of the best in the Premiership.’’
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