TOP BAR - Fixtures

Falcons change three for visit of Saracens

Newcastle Falcons have made minimal changes to their squad for this Saturday’s Aviva Premiership clash against Saracens (KO 3pm) with the starting line-up showing only three new faces from last weekend’s game against Harlequins.

Director of Rugby Dean Richards has opted on a mainly settled line up after his side broke the line almost at will at The Stoop and will be expecting a similar performance, with greater precision from his charges on Saturday afternoon.

In the backline, the only change is at Fullback where Alex Tait comes in for Simon Hammersley, who was forced to withdraw midway during the first half at Quins.

The remainder remains the same, with a Samoan flavour on both wings in the shape of Sinoti Sinoti and Alesana Tuilagi and a balanced centre partnership with Adam Powell and Juan Pablo Socino in the Outside and Inside centre shirts respectively.

In the half backs, the experienced head of Mike Blair continues at Scrum Half while Tom Catterick gets a further chance to impress having shown very well in the position against Stade Francais and Harlequins in recent weeks.

In the pack, Scottish International Scott Lawson moves into the number two shirt to pack down alongside Rob Vickers and Scott Wilson in the front row, whilst in the second, Calum Green is partnered by Kane Thompson, the Samoan lock coming in for Dom Barrow.

Completing the forwards, the back row trio of Mark Wilson, Will Welch and Ally Hogg retain the six, seven and eight shirts form last week.

On the bench, front row cover is provided by George McGuigan, Eric Fry and Kieran Brooks, while Josh Furno and Andy Saull will also be looking to provide impact in the second and back rows when called upon.

Ruki Tipuna provides cover at Scrum Half while home grown talents Chris Harris and Tom Penny complete the replacements.

Newcastle Falcons team V Saracens 27/12 KO 3pm

15 Tait 14 Sinoti 13 Powell 12 Socino 11 Tuilagi 10 Catterick 9 Blair 1 Vickers 2 Lawson 3 S. Wilson 4 Green 5 Thompson 6 M. Wilson 7 Welch 8 Hogg

Replacements

16 McGuigan 17 Fry 18 Brookes 19 Furno 20 Saull 21 Tipuna 22 Harris 23 Penny

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