Gallagher Premiership had many of their international stars back this weekend following the conclusion of the International Window. David Flatman penned his best XV which wasn’t an easy task with so many players putting their hands up in an entertaining weekend of rugby! .
Quins and Bears have their fair share of players in the XV after their impressive victories over Exeter and Tigers.
Quins forward trio of Joe Marler, Alex Dombrandt and James Chisholm where all sensational outstanding as they handed the Exeter Chiefs their first defeat of the Premiership season in London on Friday night.
Chisholm was on the score sheet as he notched the hosts’ first try, Francis Saili and Joe Marchant also went well as a centre pairing and earn a slot in Flats’ XV.
Harry Thacker went over for 2 tries against his former club and made his way into the XV of the week.
It was the Bear’s backs that really impressed Flatman, with Harry Randall, Ian Madigan, Luke Morahan & Charles Piutau getting their names on the coveted team sheet after a serious showing of attacking rugby.
Madigan was on fire with the boot, notching up 21-points, while Morahan was busy on the wing making 146m on nine carries with Piutau just behind after clocking up 103m.
Read the full breakdown of the selection here –
Here is Flats’ XV for this week:
15. Charles Piatau (Bristol Bears)
14. Taqele Naiyaravoro (Northampton Saints)
13. Nick Tompkins (Saracens)
12. Fraser Dingwall (Northampton Saints)
11. Ollie Thorley (Gloucester)
10. Danny Cipriani (Gloucester)
9. Ben Spencer (Saracens)
1. Yann Thomas (Bristol Bears)
2. Jack Yeandle (Exeter Chiefs)
3. John Afoa (Bristol Bears)
4. Elliot Stooke (Bath)
5. Mitch Lees (Exeter Chiefs)
6. Nick Haining (Bristol Bears)
7. Lewis Ludlam (Northampton Saints)
8. Tom Lawday (Exeter Chiefs)
Saracens Set to Land South African Starlet
Saracens have had their struggles of late but it appears as though despite everything they remain active in the transfer market and are preparing to sign one of South Africa’s brightest stars
With the South African side struggling with cash at the moment, losing a host of their star players in recent times, the English Premiership giants are preparing to swoop in for another, with it believed that the utility forward to sign a five-year contract.
At 22, the forward has been a regular for both the Stormers and Western Province over the past two years and if he does put pen to paper on the deal it would see him become available for England during his career.
The London-based side have had a rough few days being handed a £5.3 million fine and being deducted 35 points in the Premiership for a breach of salary cap rules, but while that is being appealed, the club seem likely to continue their transfer business as usual.
While for Saracens it would be a massive coup to sign Wiese, for the Stormers it would be a huge loss as they have already lost World Cup winners Eben Etzebeth and Damian de Allende, as well as other players such as Dan Kriel, Michael Kumbirai, Corne Fourie and EW Viljoen among others due to the current crisis at the franchise.
The Stormers have been struggling through their pre-season so far as a host of their players are on loan abroad and they await the returns of some of their World Cup stars.
They should be boosted by the returns of captain Siya Kolisi, Steven Kitshoff, Herschel Jantjies, Bongi Mbonambi, Frans Malherbe and recent World Player of the Year winner Pieter-Steph du Toit, who are all set to come back to the franchise come mid-December.
However, the loss of another player and a rising star could not only be a blow for the club but for the Springboks in the future.
Saracens Handed Another Huge Set-Back
Saracens have had a tough few days and things have got worse yet again as one of their star youngsters has been ruled out for the remainder of the season
Saracens’ terrible week has just gone from bad to worse with the confirmation that prop Ralph Adams-Hale has been ruled out for the rest of the season through injury.
The 22-year-old picked up an ankle injury on Saturday during Sarries first win over Gloucester at Kingsholm in four years and was stretchered off the pitch.
It was confirmed that he underwent surgery on Sunday and will go under the knife once more in the coming days to fix the injury, which will now leave him sidelined for the remainder of the season.
Adams-Hale had started the season brightly with two starts and two sub appearances in the team’s first four games to follow on from his Premiership final appearance last season, but this is a cruel blow for him individually as he joins star full-back Liam Williams on the injury list.
Meanwhile, it is yet another set-back for the club as a whole, who were hit with a £5.3 million fine as well as a 35-point deduction following breach of salary cap regulations. They are fighting the decision, but if they fail in their appeal they will sink to the bottom of the Premiership table.
Currently on 13 points they would drop to -22, a whopping 26-points off current basement side Leicester who have only picked up four points from their first four games.
“We have got a plan for the worst-case scenario which will affect our strategy around the Champions Cup. Our job at the moment if the points deduction remains and the appeal is not successful is to try to stay up and that is what we will try and do,” he said last week.
Meanwhile, as well as those blows the reigning English and European champions could face punishment from the European body following their absence from last week’s Champions Cup launch day, with another fine most likely on the way.
Saracens will hope things will get better soon with the return of some key international stars, and will look to kick-start their European campaign on a high when they take on French giants Racing 92 this weekend.
Former All Black Set for Exiles Debut
London Irish have named their team for Sunday’s match against Leicester with three star signings poised for their Premiership debuts for the side
Former All Blacks winger Waisake Naholo has been announced on the right-wing following his sensational move to the Exiles during the summer and will be making his first appearance for them.
Along with Naholo hooker Saia Fainga’a is in the line-up for the first time as he prepares to make his debut for the English outfit.
Meanwhile, Australian international Nick Phipps could also make his debut for Irish if he comes off the bench at some point in the game.
Following their promotion to the top tier of English rugby the Exiles splashed the cash on a number of high-profile players with the likes of Curtis Rona, Ruan Botha and Paddy Jackson already playing a part in the opening stages of the season.
While they still have players such as Adam Coleman, Sekope Kepu and Sean O’Brien to come into the side as they try to cement a place in the Premiership for next season.
Irish are currently sitting in 10th position only one place above the Tigers, who claimed their first win of the season last time out and the Exiles director of rugby Declan Kidney is expecting a tough game this weekend.
“Leicester Tigers are coming off the back of a good home win against Gloucester last weekend, so we know the challenges that they present to us. We are improving as each match comes, so we will be looking to do the same this weekend,” he said.
With one win from their opening three games the Exiles will be hoping that their new signings will make an instant impact as they try to move away from the relegation spot.
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