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Premiership Rugby

Shelford happy with progress

A Gallagher Premiership Rugby ball

Thomas Castaignede has failed to pass a late fitness test so Tim Horan continues at fly half, with Andy Goode forced to return to his own stomping ground on the bench where he is joined by Richard Haughton and the newly confirmed prop Mike Storey.

Storey joined the club this week from Super 12 side Auckland Blues to cover for the sidelined David Flatman. The 26-year-old prop played with Christian Califano in the front row last year and is contracted to Saracens until the end of the season.

The appearance of the New Zealander was extremely sudden, the Kiwi launching straight into training following a gruelling 30-hour flight from his homeland to earn himself a place in Sarries' opening 22, but the prop holds an Irish Passport, a fact that will no doubt ensure his performances are closely watched by Ireland's selectors.

"We've selected a team that we think will do the job," said Shelford. "With Thomas carrying a slight niggle we're sticking with Tim (Horan) at flyhalf and the rest of the team pretty much picked itself.

"I've been very pleased with the boys lately, they've been playing very well and we just want to keep that going. We've had four wins on the bounce and we'll be travelling with confidence.

"The conditions aren't likely to be any better than last week but the boys proved last Sunday that they have learned to cope."

Saracens: 15 Adryan Winnan, 14 Brett Sparg, 13 Tom Shanklin, 12 Kevin Sorrell, 11 Darragh O'Mahony, 10 Tim Horan, 9  Kyran Bracken (captain),  8  Kris Chesney, 7  Richard Hill, 6  Tony Roques, 5  Craig Yandell, 4  Stuart Hooper, 3 Johnny Marsters, 2  Matt Cairn, 1 Christian Califano.Replacements: 16 Mike Storey, 17 Joe Ross, 18 Abdel Benazzi, 19 Ryan Peacey, 20 Dan Kirton, 21 Andy Goode, 22 Richard Haughton.

Kick-off: Saturday, 1500 GMT


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