Wasps’ Director of Rugby Dai Young has named his squad to take on Northampton Saints this Sunday, as third and fourth in the Aviva Premiership go head-to-head at the Ricoh Arena, kick-off 3pm.
Matt Mullan again captains the side, while Welsh international Bradley Davies returns to Wasps’ starting line-up, following a week’s rest after the RBS 6 Nations.
Davies forms the second row partnership with Joe Launchbury, while replacement lock Kearnan Myall is set to make his 150th Premiership appearance.
In the back row, Nathan Hughes starts at no.8 alongside George Smith and Thomas Young, with returning internationals James Haskell and Lorenzo Cittadini ready to provide reinforcement from the bench.
Craig Hampson, who impressed on his Premiership debut last weekend against Newcastle Falcons, starts at scrum half in place of Dan Robson, who misses out through injury. The only other change in the backline sees Frank Halai return on the wing.
Wasps’ Director of Rugby Dai Young said: "Sunday’s match will have huge significance in how it’s going to finish in the table.
"If we can get a win, it would open up a bit of a gap and put a bit of pressure on other teams behind us to try to squeeze us out of the top four. A win for Northampton, would see them breathing right down our necks, with momentum behind them as we hit the final run-in.
"Saints are a really strong side, who are again timing their run well. I’m sure they will want to set the record straight after our win at Franklin’s Gardens earlier in the season and will throw everything at us on Sunday, so we need to be ready and at our absolute best. At this stage of the season, every point won or lost could prove critical."
Wasps’ team to play Northampton Saints
15. Rob Miller
14. Christian Wade
13. Elliot Daly
12. Siale Piutau
11. Frank Halai
10. Jimmy Gopperth
9. Craig Hampson
1. Matt Mullan ©
2. Ashley Johnson
3. Jake Cooper-Woolley
4. Joe Launchbury
5. Bradley Davies
6. Thomas Young
7. George Smith
8. Nathan Hughes
16. Carlo Festuccia
17. Simon McIntyre
18. Lorenzo Cittadini
19. Kearnan Myall
20. James Haskell
21. Jamie Stevenson
22. Ruaridh Jackson
23. Sailosi Tagicakibau
Wasps’ Stinger Match – in support of Marie Curie
This is the club’s flagship fixture of the season – The Stinger – which this year has been dedicated to fundraise for Marie Curie, the UK’s leading charity for people living with any terminal illness and their families.
The charity offers expert nursing care, guidance and support to help patients and their families get the most from the time they have left.
Wasps are encouraging supporters of both teams to attend the match wearing something yellow, as a show of support for Marie Curie and to raise the profile of the charity. Wasps players will warm up in yellow T-shirts and BT Sport’s presentation team at the Ricoh Arena will also be kitted out with flashes of yellow.
Yellow T-shirts will be on sale around the ground for £5 and every T shirt purchased will provide a chance to win one of the following prizes
Wasps will be fundraising at the match with collection buckets and supporters can also donate using the Just Giving site or text STINGER to 70111
For more information about the work of the Marie Curie Charity, visit: www.mariecurie.org.uk
Rugby fans will have the chance to see the RBS 6 Nations trophy, won by England, in the Jaguar Hall Fan Village between 12-1pm and 5pm-6pm. The Fan Village includes a host of family fun activities such as an inflatable assault course and rugby pitch and a try line tussle.
Tickets for Wasps v Northampton Saints at the Ricoh Arena are available from £15 for adults and under-10s go free and are available by clicking here or by ringing 024 7678 6411.
3% from each match ticket sold will be made to Marie Curie (Charity reg. no. 207994 (England & Wales), SC038731 (Scotland).