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Wasps team to play Bristol Rugby on Easter Sunday

Nathan Hughes

Director of Rugby Dai Young has named his side to travel to Ashton Gate on Easter Sunday to face Bristol Rugby (KO 3pm).

Wasps’ backline is unchanged from the formation that started against Northampton Saints.

In the pack, James Haskell and Nathan Hughes return to Wasps’ backrow, alongside Guy Thompson. Haskell, who was rested last week, starts on the blindside while Thompson switches to openside from number 8, which is worn by Hughes after an impactful contribution from the bench last Sunday. Thomas Young is rotated, having played most minutes this season in the forwards, while Ashley Johnson has been ruled out by a knee injury.

Packing down in the second row are Joe Launchbury and Matt Symons, who again impressed from the bench in Wasps’ last-gasp win against the Saints. The only other change among the forwards sees Jake Cooper-Woolley joining the replacements, having recovered from a knee injury.

Ahead of the trip to Bristol, Dai Young said: “It doesn’t matter which team we are playing from here on in until the play-offs, the focus is on accumulating points.

“Every team we play now will have their own agenda and goal that they’re fighting for, be it top four or top six, or a home Semi Final. Bristol are fighting for survival in the Premiership so it’s a dangerous time to be playing them. We’re expecting them to give it absolutely everything in a last chance saloon style scenario. It’s a massive game for both sides, with us needing to pick up points as we continue to battle for a home Semi Final.

“Bristol showed last week how good they are and how close they came to upsetting the form book against Exeter Chiefs at Sandy Park. They were unlucky not to get the win then and we are certainly not underestimating the challenge that lies ahead of us this Sunday.”

Wasps team to play Bristol Rugby

15. Willie Le Roux
14. Christian Wade
13. Elliot Daly
12. Kurtley Beale
11. Josh Bassett
10. Jimmy Gopperth
9. Joe Simpson
1. Matt Mullan
2. Tommy Taylor
3. Phil Swainston
4. Joe Launchbury ©
5. Matt Symons
6. James Haskell
7. Guy Thompson
8. Nathan Hughes

16. Tom Cruse
17. Tom Bristow
18. Jake Cooper-Woolley
19. Kearnan Myall
20. Thomas Young
21. Dan Robson
22. Danny Cipriani
23. Alapati Leiua

Unavailable for selection through injury:

James Gaskell (calf) – back in training
Simon McIntyre – (knee) expected to be back in training next week
Rob Miller (foot) – expected to be back in training next week
Marty Moore – following return to play protocols
Ashley Johnson (knee) – expected to be out for a couple of weeks
Sam Jones (ankle/leg) – hoping to be back in training towards end of April
Kyle Eastmond (Achilles) – unfortunately out for rest of the season
Alex Lundberg (ankle) – unfortunately out for rest of the season
George Edgson (ACL) – unfortunately out for rest of the season

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