Despite Gavin Henson's absence, Sean Holley (thumb) has still fielded a strong side for Sunday's showdown.
Despite a lengthy injury list, Ospreys coach Sean Holley has still fielded a side containing 14 internationals for the Heineken Cup showdown against Leicester Tigers at Welford Road, on Sunday.
One notable omission is Gavin Henson who has been banned for two games by the management for a 'rugby related internal disciplinary decision.'
The Tigers have an impressive pedigree in the tournament having won it twice and being runners-up on another two occasions and Holley is under no illusions as to the size of the task which awaits his star-studded side.
"Everybody within the Ospreys camp is looking forward to renewing what has become a healthy rivalry with Leicester. We have the utmost respect for their playing and coaching staff, and for what the club has achieved over the years, and in particular in the Heineken Cup," he said.
"They've made a good start to the current season and are playing some great rugby under their new coach Heyneke Meyer. We know that we can expect a real test on Sunday. We see Welford Road as being a great place to start this year's campaign, there will be a great atmosphere there as always.
"We have a very tight unit at the Ospreys, matches such as this one are as much about the 22 selected as the starting line-up itself, spirits are high and we intend to be extremely competitive on Sunday. We are particularly proud to be able to name 18 Welsh players in our 22, which is further evidence of the excellent work that we are doing here at the Ospreys to develop the best local talent."
Holley also conceded some difficult decisions had to be made when it came to selecting the side to open the cup campaign.
"Our players are excited about the prospect of playing in this year's Heineken Cup, they want to get off to a good start in Leicester and it has been a very difficult selection process this week with so many players in numerous positions challenging for a starting place this Sunday. A lot is at stake, as there always is in the first Pool match in this competition, and we will need to be both focused and determined against a quality team if we are to achieve our aim."
Ospreys: 15 Lee Byrne, 14 Nikki Walker, 13 Tommy Bowe, 12 Andrew Bishop, 11 Shane Williams, 10 James Hook, 9 Rhodri Wells.
8 Ryan Jones (c), 7 Marty Holah, 6 Jonathan Thomas, 5 Ian Evans, 4 Alun-wyn Jones, 3 Adam Jones, 2 Richard Hibbard, 1 Paul James.
Replacements: 16 Huw Bennett, 17 Duncan Jones, 18 Ian Gough, 19 Filo Tiatia, 20 Tom Smith, 21 Rhys Webb, 22 Daniel Biggar.
Leicester Tigers: 15 Geordan Murphy, 14 Johne Murphy, 13 Dan Hipkiss, 12 Aaron Mauger, 11 Matt Smith, 10 Toby Flood, 9 Harry Ellis.
1 Marcos Ayerza, 2 Benjamin Kayser, 3 Julian White, 4 Martin Corry (capt), 5 Ben Kay, 6 Tom Croft, 7 Ben Woods, 8 Jordan Crane.
Replacements: 16 George Chuter, 17 Dan Cole, 18 Richard Blaze, 19 Marco Wentzel, 20 Julien Dupuy, 21 Derick Hougaard, 22 Alesana Tuilagi.
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Go to www.wru.co.uk/tryourgame for more information
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