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Team's up
COYW15 (IP Logged)
19 May, 2017 12:01

Wasps team to play Leicester Tigers in the Aviva Premiership Semi Final

Dai Young has named his side to take on Leicester Tigers in the Aviva Premiership semi final at the Ricoh Arena this Saturday, kick off 5.15pm.

There are only two changes to Wasps’ starting XV that won 35-15 against Saracens a fortnight ago.

Ashley Johnson and Phil Swainston start in the front row alongside Matt Mullan, with Tommy Taylor and Marty Moore returning to fitness to take a place on a strong bench where all replacements will be looking forward to making a big impact.

James Gaskell has also recovered from a calf injury to return to the match day squad, while Kearnan Myall is ruled out by a knee injury.

Ahead of the semi final showdown at the Ricoh Arena, where 30,000 are expected for the second game running, Wasps’ Director of Rugby Dai Young said:

“We are all really looking forward to the challenge and there has been a real excitement around the training camp this week in anticipation of the game and what’s at stake.

“I’m sure Leicester Tigers will look forward to coming to the Ricoh Arena and will be keen to upset the party. It will be a ferocious contest against a side that has reached the play-offs 13 years on the bounce. You have to applaud that consistency and quality to finish in the top four year-after-year.

“We’re learning to handle these big occasions better each time we play in them. We’ve put in a lot of hard graft throughout the season to reach this stage and we know there are no second chances on Saturday – it’s knock-out rugby.

“We love playing at the Ricoh Arena and the players thrive on the atmosphere created by our Wasps’ supporters. We really do feel it’s a responsibility for us to go out and play well to repay them. I’m sure there will be a lot of Tigers’ supporters as well, which will only add to the occasion.

“It has been a collective effort from the entire squad to get into the Aviva Premiership play-offs and I know every player taking the field on Saturday will give everything they have to do the squad and the club proud.”

Tickets for Saturday’s Aviva Premiership semi final against Leicester Tigers at the Ricoh Arena are still available from as little as £27 online at

Supporters are encouraged to use the ‘Print at home’ feature when ordering tickets online at, to avoid queues at the Ricoh Arena on Saturday.

With another bumper crowd expected, please make sure you are in your seats 15 minutes before kick off to avoid congestion entering the stadium bowl.

Wasps team to play Leicester Tigers

15. Kurtley Beale
14. Christian Wade
13. Elliot Daly
12. Jimmy Gopperth
11. Willie Le Roux
10. Danny Cipriani
9. Joe Simpson
1. Matt Mullan
2. Ashley Johnson
3. Phil Swainston
4. Joe Launchbury (c)
5. Matt Symons
6. James Haskell
7. Thomas Young
8. Nathan Hughes

16. Tommy Taylor
17. Simon McIntyre
18. Marty Moore
19. James Gaskell
20. Guy Thompson
21. Dan Robson
22. Alapati Leiua
23. Josh Bassett

Unavailable through injury
Jake Cooper-Woolley (toe)
Kearnan Myall (knee)
Sam Jones (leg and ankle)
Kyle Eastmond (Achilles)
Carlo Festuccia (hand)
Alex Lundberg (ankle)
George Edgson (knee)

Re: Team's up
COYW15 (IP Logged)
19 May, 2017 12:02
To play:

15 Telusa Veainu
14 Adam Thompstone
13 Mathew Tait
12 Owen Williams
11 Peter Betham
10 Freddie Burns
9 Ben Youngs
1 Ellis Genge
2 Tom Youngs (c)
3 Dan Cole
4 Dom Barrow
5 Graham Kitchener
6 Mike Fitzgerald
7 Brendon O'Connor
8 Luke Hamilton

16 George McGuigan
17 Greg Bateman
18 Fraser Balmain
19 Ed Slater
20 Mike Williams
21 Sam Harrison
22 Jack Roberts
23 Matt Smith

Re: Team's up
Buzzboy (IP Logged)
19 May, 2017 12:02
Happy with that. COYW

Re: Team's up
kentwasp1 (IP Logged)
19 May, 2017 12:03
Most important game of the season so far and boy have we got one fantastic team. It's all I can think about today, so nervous. COYW indeed. Bring it on ... (Sm122)

Re: Team's up
Westy68 (IP Logged)
19 May, 2017 12:04
The front row is potentially the problem, big game needed by swainston who has played well but this is a big ask

Re: Team's up
Chins (IP Logged)
19 May, 2017 12:09
Tigers will be fired up due to the tragic situation the Young's boys find themselves in. We are going to have to start well tomorrow or we could be 14 points down before we know it.

Would of been good to see JCW start, but I think Ashley is a good starting call. Cant complain about our bench !!

Just hope it stops raining in time.

Re: Team's up
Raggs (IP Logged)
19 May, 2017 12:24
I doubt the news of toms wife is news to the tigers players. I don't think it would have an additional effect.

Good sides. Let's hope for a good game.

Re: Team's up
Dgwasp (IP Logged)
19 May, 2017 12:26
I'm pleased with that. It is a shame that JCW is not fit, but Symons and Launch behind have been looking very effective and Swainston has been playing well too. I think we may come off second best in the scrum but I think we need to make sure that is not the case with the line out, win that battle and we could be very difficult to beat.

The bench looks very strong indeed, we just need to make sure we don't lose the game in the first half.

I am now feeling somewhat excited!


Re: Team's up
Stopsy (IP Logged)
19 May, 2017 12:29
We Tigers will be fired up because we are the underdogs playing the league's top team away.

Mighty fine squad you have named!

Re: Team's up
Andy1210 (IP Logged)
19 May, 2017 12:54
That's two titanic line ups! Looks a good team but I'm not convinced with the front row - not sure how TT will work as impact and Moore hasn't had much rugby for a while.

Genge will be on fire and very aggressive tomorrow and alongside Youngs and Cole that is a formidable and very aggressive front row. Tigers have an inform Burns with B Youngs to form a top quality half back combo and a good midfield too.

This is a much better side to face than the Saracens team a couple of weeks back. On top of that, the weight of expectation will be with us whilst they will be super motivated to do it for T Youngs - there has been a lot of talk of it in the last week and it's been a bit of a rally cry - the players want to reward his loyalty to the team through troubled times with a big performance at their local rivals and table toppers.

We have to be up to the physical challenge, be on the ball from the first second, win the critical collisions and not let their forwards bully us onto the back foot at the set piece and breakdown - that will also depend a great deal on Carley. We're going to have to get stuck in where it hurts to a man.

We've got the class, but we are going to have to be very cute and make the most of our chances. Big game from Launchers, Nathan and Ash and hopefully Cips will get the space to bring our quality into play and Gopps will be on target.

It's going to be bloodcurdlingly ferocious. They owe us one in knockout rugby but let's hope it's not tomorrow. Might be an idea to get LBND in the dressing room for a pre match message based on his history.

I'm very, very nervous and I'll have no voice on Sunday.

Please, please COYW!!

Re: Team's up
Dgwasp (IP Logged)
19 May, 2017 13:06
I agree Andy, Tigers have certainly put out a very tough pack which I fully expect to come flying at us at the breakdown and early set pieces. We really need to concentrate and not allow a fired up tigers pack to dominate the first half an hour.

I am hoping that if we play at a similar level to last week we have at least got parity with tigers in the second row and think that our back row should come out on top. We will struggle with the front row, however Smashley has been a hero this year and I hope his position in the starting line up will help fend off an early Tigers front row barrage!

Re: Team's up
GeorgeTheWasp (IP Logged)
19 May, 2017 13:46
In terms of the hard battle in the scrum - let's hope that we do what you are always taught in scrums at a young age - get it in and get it out - get Nathan carrying and making yards!

Agreed that we have to be up for this game and must hit every breakdown! Still got a good feeling about it and think we will pull a score clear just towards the end with the impact of TT, Thompson, Robson etc off the bench. Wasps by 8 for me

Re: Team's up
Lwasp (IP Logged)
19 May, 2017 15:41
I'm always surprised once games start and you've had a couple of scrums to assess parity how rarely teams change their plans and switch to an in/out scrum approach. We have been guilty in the past of trying to hold a ball in to a scrum that is clearly under pressure.

Hopefully Sat the guys will make an on field assessment and play accordingly.

Re: Team's up
Andy1210 (IP Logged)
19 May, 2017 17:14
I've been mulling it over and can't help thinking that if TT was fit he'd be starting. Ashley would then do what he did against carries and come on as the impact player where needed, Hooker or No 6.

Unless Dai is managing fitness in case we do make the final.

Re: Team's up
WaspieKev (IP Logged)
19 May, 2017 17:28
Great Wasps team and a very worthy opponent in Tigers. They have a very big team though and I'm sure that our pace will be the deciding factor and eventually run them ragged. Really looking forward to this one, and its Wasps by 10 for me.

Re: Team's up
kentwasp1 (IP Logged)
19 May, 2017 18:07
I'm sitting in a pub garden sipping Harveys of lewes ale, watching my two small boys playing cricket with the ECB "All Stars" initiative. Warm sunny evening and songbirds in full flow. Life doesn't get better. Or does it. Tomorrow can end a decade of pain, bring new life and glory to the club, put ourselves into finalist mode like the good old days. It's just incredible we are almost there. So so nervous. Sleepless night coming up. COYW

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