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First starts for Strachan and Davies while Brüssow returns for Northampton Saints

First starts for Strachan and Davies while Brüssow returns for Northampton Saints

Northampton Saints have made nine changes to their starting XV for the Premiership Rugby Cup trip across the Midlands to face Wasps, with director of rugby Chris Boyd handing Charlie Davies and Fraser Strachan their first Club starts.

There is also a return to action for Heinrich Brüssow for the first time since mid-September, with the powerful flanker recovering from injury to help Saints attempt to take a stranglehold on Pool Three of the competition.

Northampton romped to a 51-24 win over Bristol Bears to kick-off the Premiership Rugby Cup in style last week, but to make it two from two they will need to muster their first win at the Ricoh Arena since 2015.

Centre Strachan will make his first start for the men in Black, Green and Gold alongside Fraser Dingwall in the midfield, while scrum-half Davies will join forces with fly-half James Grayson – named the breakthrough back of the first round of matches by Premiership Rugby earlier this week.

George Furbank retains his place at fullback as does winger Ollie Sleightholme, but Andrew Kellaway comes in to complete the back three after scoring off the bench last weekend.

Hooker James Fish makes his first start since the second round of the Gallagher Premiership, and is joined in an experienced front row by Francois Van Wyk and Ben Franks.

Dom Barrow meanwhile continues in the engine room, with fellow lock Api Ratuniyarawa making his return to action following an ankle injury, and Jamie Gibson – who captains the side – comes into the back row with Brüssow to pack down either side of No.8 Mitch Eadie.

Amongst the replacements there is room for Toby Trinder, Alex Coles, Paddy Ryan, Connor Tupai and Josh Gillespie, all of whom would make their senior Northampton debuts if they enter the fray – with Gillespie hoping to become the youngest Saint in the professional era at 18 years and 15 days old.

Tickets to see Saints return to Gallagher Premiership action against Wasps are still available. Book your place from £36 adults and £16 juniors now by CLICKING HERE.

WASPS v NORTHAMPTON SAINTS
Premiership Rugby Cup, Round Two
Sunday 4th November, 2018
Ricoh Arena
Kick-off: 3pm

15 George Furbank
14 Andrew Kellaway
13 Fraser Dingwall
12 Fraser Strachan
11 Ollie Sleightholme
10 James Grayson
9 Charlie Davies

1 Francois Van Wyk
2 James Fish
3 Ben Franks
4 Api Ratuniyarawa
5 Dom Barrow
6 Jamie Gibson (capt)
7 Heinrich Brüssow
8 Mitch Eadie

16 Reece Marshall
17 Toby Trinder
18 Karl Garside
19 Alex Coles
20 Devante Onojaife
21 Patrick Ryan
22 Connor Tupai
23 Josh Gillespie

Not available for selection:

Rory Hutchinson (knee), Ken Pisi (shoulder), Nafi Tuitavake (neck), Andy Symons (knee), Jamal Ford-Robinson (knee), Tom Emery (ankle), Harry Mallinder (knee), James Haskell (ankle), Matt Worley (concussion), James Craig (concussion), Mikey Haywood (concussion), and Ehren Painter (back).

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