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Preview: London Irish v Wasps

Preview: London Irish v Wasps

Scott Steele is hoping that the Twickenham crowd can help inspire London Irish to liftoff in Aviva Premiership Rugby as the London Double Header inches closer.

The Exiles are winless in Aviva Premiership Rugby, though did get their first victory of the season during the European break against Agen.

And Irish will be hoping their luck changes at Rugby HQ, where they have lost on their last six visits to Twickenham since beating Saracens there in the 2010 London Double Header.

But there is a feeling that the tide is about to turn under new head coach Tom Coventry and scrum-half Steele is in no doubt that the changes will reap rewards.

“I played in my first London Double Header last year at Twickenham and it was amazing, it’s such a great occasion,” he said.

“Wasps will of course be a tough game but the atmosphere in there gets the boys up for it and it should be a great game.

“I think it will just take time as we are in a transition period and we are not far away from getting points and getting the results.

“I think the mindset has changed, I think we are doing things that are a lot tougher and compared to last year we are trying to play a bit more running rugby.

Wasps are flying high in both form and confidence at the moment, having dispatched European heavyweights Leinster and Toulon in successive weeks.

However, Dai Young’s troops have won only one of their last four visits to Twickenham: 38-30 over Gloucester in April 2014.

But after impressing in Europe over the last two weeks, Wasps hooker Ashley Johnson believes his side can light up London too.

“As a rugby player you love playing in front of huge crowds,” said Johnson. “Our support at the Ricoh Arena has been massive and we love playing there but the London Double Header is something new and different.

“You don’t get to play at Twickenham often and in the last two or three years or so when I have been involved with the London Double Headers, the support has been amazing.

“It is a great day for the family and for your friends to come out.

“It is something that we as players really look forward to and I have certainly enjoyed my time in them over the years.”

Twickenham Stadium, 5.30pm – Live on BT Sport

Referee: Wayne Barnes (157th Premiership game).
Assistant Referees: Paul Burton & Andrew Pearce. TMO: Sean Davey.

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