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Leicester Tigers announce team to face London Irish

Leicester Tigers announce team to face London Irish

Leicester Tigers will hand club debuts to Gareth Owen and Dan Tuohy in Saturday’s Aviva Premiership Round 6 clash against London Irish.

Former Scarlets centre Owen makes his Aviva Premiership bow after playing in three rounds of the Premiership ‘A’ League since his summer move to Tigers, while on-loan second-rower Tuohy also comes into the starting line-up.

George McGuigan and Sam Harrison are given a first start of the season, with Will Evans joining Tonga international duo Sione Kalamafoni and Valentino Mapapalangi in the back row.

Fly-half George Ford captains Tigers for the first time, with club skipper Tom Youngs named among the replacements.

Ellis Genge returns to the squad after his late withdrawal due to a back spasm last Saturday and is also among five senior internationals named on the bench. Fellow prop Pat Cilliers returns to the squad after a groin injury.

Tigers go to the Madejski Stadium on the back of three successive league victories and head coach Matt O’Connor said: “The win was important against Exeter last week but there is still scope for the performance to be better and it is important that we aim up again.

“We’ve had some really entertaining but tough games at Irish and we have to back-up all the good things we did last Saturday.”

Leicester Tigers (v London Irish, away, Saturday 3.00pm)

15 Telusa Veainu
14 Nick Malouf
13 Gareth Owen
12 Matt Toomua
11 Jonny May
10 George Ford (c)
9 Sam Harrison

1 Greg Bateman
2 George McGuigan
3 Dan Cole
4 Dan Tuohy
5 Dom Barrow
6 Sione Kalamafoni
7 Will Evans
8 Valentino Mapapalangi

Replacements
16 Tom Youngs
17 Ellis Genge
18 Patrick Cilliers
19 Harry Wells
20 Luke Hamilton
21 Ben Youngs
22 Joe Ford
23 Mathew Tait

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