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NEWS: Teams Up: Aviva Premiership Round 15 Saints v L. Irish


By Happywifehappylie
February 16 2018

The team is up as Saints give a warm welcome to O'Irish at Franklins Gardens kick off a traditional 3pm on Saturday 17th February 2018

Northampton Saints have made four changes to their starting XV as they look to get back to winning ways in the Aviva Premiership against London Irish on Saturday.

The hosts will be looking to put last weekend’s frustrating away loss to Bath Rugby swiftly behind them, as they return to Franklin’s Gardens (kick-off 3pm) where they are unbeaten in 2018. London Irish have only won once at the home of Saints since 2004, and technical coaching consultant Alan Gaffney and interim head coach Alan Dickens will be keen to keep that record intact with Northampton looking to climb the league standings.

Three changes to Saints backline sees George North return from international duty on the wing, Nic Groom restored to the No.9 jersey, and inside centre Luther Burrell make his first appearance following a five-week injury layoff. With Harry Mallinder retained by England throughout the week he is not involved in the matchday squad, and Piers Francis remains at fly-half.

The pack is almost identical to that which lined up at the Rec last weekend, with the front row unchanged ahead of Api Ratuniyarawa and skipper Christian Day in the engine room. But there is one switch in a rejigged back-row; Jamie Gibson moves into the No.6 jersey to make room for Heinrich Brüssow, with the tenacious Springbok making his first Saints start at openside flanker. Teimana Harrison remains at No.8 while there is room for Stephen Myler amongst the replacements, with Tom Wood and Cobus Reinach also moving to the bench.

And while London Irish have not won in the league since the opening day of the season, Gaffney is adamant that Saints will not make the mistake of underestimating their opponents. “It's going to be a really important game and the most important thing for us is that we give London Irish respect,” he said. “In rugby, whoever you are playing, you've got to show them respect and we will show them the utmost respect as we are only sitting two places above them in the table. “We know this is a very important game for us; we're still aiming for the top six at worst and we've got to get our process right to go out and win games.”

SAINTS: 15 Ahsee Tuala 14 George North 13 Rob Horne 12 Luther Burrell 11 Ben Foden 10 Piers Francis 9 Nic Groom 1 Campese Ma’afu 2 Mikey Haywood 3 Kieran Brookes 4 Api Ratuniyarawa 5 Christian Day (capt) 6 Jamie Gibson 7 Heinrich Brüssow 8 Teimana Harrison Replacements: 16 Reece Marshall 17 Francois van Wyk 18 Jamal Ford-Robinson 19 David Ribbans 20 Tom Wood 21 Cobus Reinach 22 Stephen Myler 23 Nafi Tuitavake

LONDON IRISH: 15 James Marshall 14 Joe Cokanasiga 13 Tom Fowlie 12 Luke McLean 11 Alex Lewington 10 Greig Tonks 9 Piet van Zyl 1 Ben Franks 2 David Paice 3 Ollie Hoskins 4 Franco van der Merwe (capt) 5 Teofilo Paulo 6 Arno Botha 7 Max Northcote-Green 8 Ofisa Treviranus Replacements: 16 Dave Porecki 17 Harry Elrington 18 Petrus Du Plessis 19 Sebastian De Chaves 20 Conor Gilsenan 21 Scott Steele 22 Tommy Bell 23 Aseli Tikoirotuma

 

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Marching On
NEWS: Teams Up: Aviva Premiership Round 15 Saints v L. Irish
Marching On (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 18:10
What do you think? You can have your say by posting below.
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MESSAGES->author
Teams up
Chris Hoddle (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 11:59
SAINTS V LONDON IRISH TEAM NEWS
Aviva Premiership Rugby, Round 15
Franklin’s Gardens
Saturday 17th February, 2018
Kick-off: 3pm
SAINTS
15 Ahsee Tuala
14 George North
13 Rob Horne
12 Luther Burrell
11 Ben Foden
10 Piers Francis
9 Nic Groom
1 Campese Ma’afu
2 Mikey Haywood
3 Kieran Brookes
4 Api Ratuniyarawa
5 Christian Day (capt)
6 Jamie Gibson
7 Heinrich Brüssow
8 Teimana Harrison
Replacements:
16 Reece Marshall
17 Francois van Wyk
18 Jamal Ford-Robinson
19 David Ribbans
20 Tom Wood
21 Cobus Reinach
22 Stephen Myler
23 Nafi Tuitavake
Injury update:
Alex Waller and James Craig are unavailable for selection.

http://chrishoddle.smugmug.com/photos/i-TsCHdzK/0/M/i-TsCHdzK-M.gif

 
tedge
Re: Teams up
tedge (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 12:01
Strong looking selection and bench - they just have to perform !

 
MESSAGES->author
Re: Teams up
Chris Hoddle (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 12:03
Here's the Irish team
ondon Irish: 15 James Marshall, 14 Joe Cokanasiga, 13 Tom Fowlie, 12 Luke McLean, 11 Alex Lewington, 10 Greig Tonks, 9 Piet van Zyl, 1 Ben Franks, 2 David Paice, 3 Ollie Hoskins, 4 Franco van der Merwe (c), 5 Teofilo Paulo, 6 Arno Botha, 7 Max Northcote-Green, 8 Ofisa Treviranus

Replacements: 16 Dave Porecki, 17 Harry Elrington, 18 Petrus Du Plessis, 19 Sebastian De Chaves, 20 Conor Gilsenan, 21 Scott Steele, 22 Tommy Bell, 23 Aseli Tikoirotuma

http://chrishoddle.smugmug.com/photos/i-TsCHdzK/0/M/i-TsCHdzK-M.gif

 
HungryLikeTheWolf
Re: Teams up
Wilson Pickett (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 12:04
Brussow man of the match !

 
Nath-coys
Re: Teams up
Nath-coys (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 12:11
Looks strong!

Expecting a physical performance!
Looks like back row balance and pecking order is established.

COYS!!

 
Saints065
Re: Teams up
Saints065 (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 12:13
100% have to win this match, no messing about.

COYS

 
manxsaint
Re: Teams up
manxsaint (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 12:18
Where is Paul Hill? Not injured, not playing, not even on the bench . . . . .

 
St tub
Re: Teams up
St tub (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 12:28
Playing 3 vs Franks.. not a game for Hilly (think Leinster home and away)

KB needs to find 60mins in the tank (even if it means hands on the hips) - then Jamal FRs impact in the loose is a big asset

 
TheGent
Re: Teams up
TheGent (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 12:39
Piers is looking more and more like a 12 playing at 10 currently but hope he has a big game.

Expecting a big reaction after the bath game. We've got to be absolutely ruthless.

 
andysaint
Re: Teams up
andysaint (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 12:44
Pleased to see that they have tinkered with the back row and comfort blanket is on the bench. This needs to be and should be a good win for Saints.

 
Walks11
Re: Teams up
Walks11 (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 12:45
Good team.. fast start blow them away early and enjoy the 2nd half

 
herbie85
Re: Teams up
herbie85 (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 12:49
Quote:
manxsaint
Where is Paul Hill? Not injured, not playing, not even on the bench . . . . .

This I have an issue with. Paul hill is with us, 22 and available. He has played international rugby and prime for developing. And instead we select a guy that is leaving and hasn't performed to a good level for a couple of years. Don't see the sense in it

 
St tub
Re: Teams up
St tub (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 12:59
Tighthead is so pivotal Herbie - your scrum needs to be (minimum) rock solid or the opposition (under current rules) have an opt out and lineout if defending and a shot for 3 points anywhere inside the 10m line if attacking

8-10 bad scrums could be 15 points plus against us and our own attacking nullified - Piers, in-fact Sexton/Biggar/anyone can only look bad going backwards with rubbish ball from set piece

 
Walks11
Re: Teams up
Walks11 (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 13:00
Quote:
herbie85
Quote:
manxsaint
Where is Paul Hill? Not injured, not playing, not even on the bench . . . . .

This I have an issue with. Paul hill is with us, 22 and available. He has played international rugby and prime for developing. And instead we select a guy that is leaving and hasn't performed to a good level for a couple of years. Don't see the sense in it

They are picking a team to win and believe kB is better than PH. KB is still a Saint.

 
HungryLikeTheWolf
Re: Teams up
Wilson Pickett (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 13:06
you have to select a side for this weekend not next year, Brookes currently better so... fair enough

 
herbie85
Re: Teams up
herbie85 (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 13:27
Board seems to have changed their feelings. Not sure Brooke's has been that standout to command being picked without a second thought. I'm not dumbing down the importance of props, have had the fortune of playing 8 behind good ones, and then the flip side of inexperienced or weaker props and the scrum going backwards at a rate...really not a nice experience. Just feel we could be developing our England international tight head. Solely my opinion

 
saintsfella
Re: Teams up
saintsfella (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 16:33
Not that I know anything about the art of propping/proppage/propaganda, but Paulie Hill looks like a more natural build loosehead (traditionally more athletic and a more technique based scrummager) than a tighthead (huge pillar of the scrum who takes a load of pressure). I’m sure I’ll be corrected 100 times over but could this be a good solution?

 
alwayshopeful
Re: Teams up
alwayshopeful (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 17:02
Team looks good as it is.. but we need to beat Irish, preferably with a BP so that even the mathematical chance of relegation goes away - once thats accomplished we should be building Paul Hill, JFR, Mikey and others..

Certainly, at that point the leavers should not be playing as, truthfully, TOP 4 has definitely gone and TOP6 should be achievable for the others (gives them something to go for!)

Come on you saints. !

 
Hantsaintsrus4
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Aviva Premiership Round 15 Saints v L. Irish
Hantsaintsrus4 (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 18:25
No Stephenson? We will miss his tackling. Burrel needs to have improved.

 
MESSAGES->author
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Aviva Premiership Round 15 Saints v L. Irish
Chris Hoddle (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 22:04
From quotes over the last couple of weeks from gaffer I think he doesn’t rate Tom S. especially when trying to unload the ball. So all though he is young I would be surprised if he is given a new contract.

http://chrishoddle.smugmug.com/photos/i-TsCHdzK/0/M/i-TsCHdzK-M.gif

 
fleetg
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Aviva Premiership Round 15 Saints v L. Irish
fleetg (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 22:36
That woukd be a real shame if Tom S does not get a contract. Granted he rarely passes but I think he is so used to hardly getting a start that he thinks he needs to pull up every tree each time !! I really rate him anf of all the out of contract players woukd be sad to see him go. Personally Tom S and Rob H would please me as a combination.

 
St Marcus
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Aviva Premiership Round 15 Saints v L. Irish
St Marcus (IP Logged)
16/02/2018 23:19
Do you think so Chris!?!? Judging by how poor a number of players (particularly in the pack) have consistently been over the last couple of seasons I think some of them ought to be more worried about new contracts...
Agree with that fleetg. Stephenson is a more rounded player than most of our other centre options. Yes he makes mistakes but he needs game time and alongside Horne has great potential. We need to hold onto players like him.

 
Eif Jones
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Aviva Premiership Round 15 Saints v L. Irish
Eif Jones (IP Logged)
17/02/2018 02:45
Hill has never recovered from the hammering Adam Jones gave him last season, I'm pretty sure Saints will be saying bye bye to him, not good enough I'm afraid.

 
SaintsAsh
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Aviva Premiership Round 15 Saints v L. Irish
SaintsAsh (IP Logged)
17/02/2018 05:49
lol, yeah it was all Adam Jones, of course, why did I not see that.

 
herbie85
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Aviva Premiership Round 15 Saints v L. Irish
herbie85 (IP Logged)
17/02/2018 07:07
Eif the lads 22. He was playing against Adam Jones, with all his experience in his mid 30's. Not sure that's a complete shaming if I'm honest. Still around 8 years away from tight head peak

 
Hantsaintsrus4
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Aviva Premiership Round 15 Saints v L. Irish
Hantsaintsrus4 (IP Logged)
17/02/2018 12:39
Are people really saying Stephenson can't pass so we will play Burrel who can't pass and loses the ball in contact regularly? Stephenson does so much more in defence and he has attitude. Let's hope if he can't get a regular spot he leaves to further his career.

 
Brackleysaint
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Aviva Premiership Round 15 Saints v L. Irish
Brackleysaint (IP Logged)
17/02/2018 19:10
Not just people, the Gaffer.

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