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Team news: Radwan returns against London Irish



Friday 2 December 2022

Adam Radwan comes in for Newcastle Falcons as they make just one change for Saturday’s Gallagher Premiership trip to London Irish.

Ben Stevenson and Matias Moroni both move one place infield, with Radwan coming onto the right wing as the Falcons set out in search of their third consecutive league victory.

Last week’s replacements Logovi’i Mulipola, Matias Orlando, Sean Robinson and Freddie Lockwood all miss out due to injuries picked up in the 24-21 home win over Exeter Chiefs, with Mark Tampin, Tian Schoeman, Matthew Dalton and Tom Marshall called up.

Michael Young once again captains the side from scrum-half, with head coach Dave Walder expecting a tough test as the Falcons go hunting their third consecutive Premiership victory.

He said: “We’re putting a lot of significance on finishing this block with three Premiership wins, but London Irish are a good side.

“Nobody in the league has got more bonus points than them this season, and they cause teams a lot of problems. Things just haven’t gone their way in certain games but we’re very aware they’re going to threaten us, and we’ll need to get our own game right to have a chance of winning.

“We’re really looking forward to going down there on the back of a couple of good wins in the league, but we’re not getting ahead of ourselves. We’ve still got plenty of bits and pieces to tighten up on, and it’s about finding that balance of highlighting your good work whilst also acknowledging where you need to improve.

“London Irish will be desperate to get their season on track, we’re very aware it’s a huge game for them but it’s also a really significant one for ourselves in terms of really pushing and looking up the table.”

Having been involved in a number of close battles in recent weeks, Walder said: “The Premiership is as competitive as I’ve ever seen it, and every week there seems to be a load of games going down to the wire.

“It makes for a great spectacle, and if you come out on the right side of it it makes you feel a lot better. One of these days we might actually win a game where the result’s not in jeopardy going into the last couple of minutes, but until then we’ll just continue giving everyone a bit of drama!

“Mark Laycock has taken charge of the attack this season, he has changed a few things and we’re playing a great brand of rugby. We’re scoring more tries now than we have done for a while, and it’s something we can really build on as we look to move the club forward.”

Saturday’s game will be the Falcons’ first outing since the sad news of Doddie Weir’s passing, with the Falcons legend receiving widespread tributes from within the game and beyond.

“It’s very sad news about Doddie, he’s been in all of our thoughts and I’m sure clubs throughout the competition will be paying appropriate tributes to him,” said Walder, who scored the winning try for the Falcons in the 2001 Tetley’s Bitter Cup final, when Weir captained the side.

“There are lots of pictures of him around our stadium, and it’s been nice in those quiet moments during the week to go round and have a look at him lifting a trophy, taking a line-out and just having that smile on his face which everyone associates him with.

“We’ve all got great memories of Doddie, and even before the news came through over the weekend we had his partner in crime, Gary Armstrong, come in to speak to the players last week. Gary spoke about how much it meant for him to play for Newcastle Falcons, having fun and battling for your mates, which very much typifies how Doddie used to approach things.”

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Newcastle Falcons team v London Irish (Saturday, 3pm, Gtech Community Stadium)

15 Elliott Obatoyinbo, 14 Adam Radwan, 13 Ben Stevenson, 12 Matias Moroni, 11 Mateo Carreras, 10 Brett Connon, 9 Michael Young (captain); 1 Adam Brocklebank, 2 George McGuigan, 3 Richard Palframan, 4 Greg Peterson, 5 Sebastian de Chaves, 6 Callum Chick, 7 Guy Pepper, 8 Carl Fearns.

Replacements: 16 Jamie Blamire, 17 Conrad Cade, 18 Mark Tampin, 19 Matthew Dalton, 20 Tom Marshall, 21 Sam Stuart, 22 Tian Schoeman, 23 Tom Penny.

Not available for selection: Phil Brantingham, Sam Clark, Connor Collett, Gary Graham, Louie Johnson, Conor Kenny, Freddie Lockwood, Pete Lucock, Logovi’i Mulipola, Matias Orlando, Sean Robinson, Oliver Spencer, Philip van der Walt, George Wacokecoke, Will Welch.

Referee: Wayne Barnes.

Source – Newcastle Falcons Rugby


Irish name side for west London derby



Declan Kidney has confirmed the squad for Sunday’s derby clash with Harlequins at the Gtech Community Stadium in Round 16 of the Gallagher Premiership (3pm kick-off).

Will Goodrick-Clarke, Agustin Creevy and Oliver Hoskins are in the front row, with Rob Simmons and Adam Coleman in the second row.

Matt Rogerson captains the side from the six jersey and is joined in the back row by Tom Pearson and Chandler Cunningham-South.

Ben White and Paddy Jackson link up to form the halfback duo, and Rory Jennings partners Benhard van Rensburg in the centres.

Michael Dykes, Lucio Cinti and James Stokes complete the line-up as the back three.

“Whenever these two clubs pitch up against one another, it always creates a good game of rugby,” said Declan Kidney, Director of Rugby.

“I know that we are expecting a good crowd at the Gtech Community Stadium on Sunday, and they will inevitably create a great atmosphere.

“We need to make sure that we put in a full 80-minute performance to give our supporters a reason to show their voice. Harlequins are a well-drilled side, and we know it will be a difficult challenge this weekend, but one we look forward to.”

London Irish:
15 James Stokes, 14 Lucio Cinti, 13 Benhard van Rensburg, 12 Rory Jennings, 11 Michael Dykes, 10 Paddy Jackson, 9 Ben White, 1 Will Goodrick-Clarke, 2 Agustin Creevy, 3 Oliver Hoskins, 4 Rob Simmons, 5 Adam Coleman, 6 Matt Rogerson (c), 7 Tom Pearson, 8 Chandler Cunningham-South.

16 Mike Willemse, 17 Danilo Fischetti, 18 Ciaran Parker, 19 Api Ratuniyarawa, 20 Juan Martin Gonzalez, 21 Joe Powell, 22 Luca Morisi, 23 Henry Arundell.

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Content & Images from – London Irish Rugby

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Baxter issues Moon injury update



Exeter Chiefs

By Mark Stevens

Rob Baxter says he cannot give a timescale as to when prop Ben Moon will return to the Exeter Chiefs match-day squad.

The 33-year-old forward is currently Exeter’s longest-serving player, having made his debut in 2008 away to Sedgley Park, and is the last remaining member of their 2009-10 promotion squad.

The England international, however, has not featured for the Devon club since coming off the bench against Munster in last April’s Heineken Champions Cup clash at Sandy Park.

Asked by the media this week about Moon, the Chiefs’ Director of Rugby said: “I wouldn’t hold out hope that he’s going to be appearing soon. It’s been a challenge for Ben for a little period of time now, it’s not just been this season.

“He’s had periods in and out with it, it’s something that’s been affecting him for a little while and because of what it is we just have to be very careful with it.”

Moon has featured in all six of Exeter’s Premiership final appearances at Twickenham – and he also played in the 2020 European Champions Cup final win over Racing 92, and Exeter’s first major final when they beat Northampton Saints to win the 2014 LV Cup.

Moon won eight England caps in the 2018-19 season, but did not make the squad for that autumn’s World Cup in Japan.

“He’s still active around the club, he’s still here, he’s in training, he’s continuing very hard with his rehab and getting everything else he can right, but we’ve just got to be really careful around that neck.

“It’s probably one of those things where it’s getting to the stage where there’s not a lot more we can do. I can’t talk for Ben about his future, but you’re not going to see him in the immediate future on the pitch.”

Content & Images from – Exeter Chiefs Rugby

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TEAM NEWS – Sale Sharks v Bath Rugby



South African talisman Rob du Preez is set to make his 100th Sharks appearance whilst Alex Groves is in line for his Gallagher Premiership debut as Alex Sanderson names his side to face Bath Rugby at the AJ Bell Stadium tomorrow night. (Kick-off 7:45pm – Live on BT Sport) 

Sanderson makes seven changes to the Sale starting line-up as his squad returns to Gallagher Premiership action following defeat at the hands of Ulster in the Champions Cup. 

In the forwards, there is a complete change of the Sharks front-row as Simon McIntyre, Tommy Taylor and Nick Schonert all return to face Bath.  

Cobus Wiese links back up with Josh Beaumont in the second row following a one-match suspension for a dangerous tackle in the Sharks’ clash with Toulouse two weeks ago. 

Jono Ross captains the side in the absence of Ben Curry, whilst Sam Dugdale steps in to replace the flanker after his England call up to Steve Borthwick’s England squad. Jean-Luc du Preez retains the number 8 shirt with twin-brother Dan remaining on the side lines due to an ongoing hand injury. 

Gus Warr continues to provide a platform for success at scrum-half and links up with centurion Rob du Preez, who is named at fly-half. 

The ever-present Sam James retains the thirteen shirt with Ryan Mills picked at inside centre in the absence of Manu Tuilagi. The former Wasps centre is one of two changes in the Sharks’ back line. 

Sanderson’s second change in the backs comes in the form of Tom Roebuck, who replaces Arron Reed on the wing after an impressive cameo in the Champions Cup. Tom O’Flaherty is named on the other wing, with exciting academy graduate Joe Carpenter at full-back. 

On the bench, Ewan Ashman, Ross Harrison and Joe Jones are named as front-row replacements, with Alex Groves and Rouban Birch providing further cover for the forwards. Raffi Quirke, Luke James and Arron Reed cover the backs. 

Sale Sharks Starting XV: 

15. Joe Carpenter, 14. Tom Roebuck, 13. Sam James, 12. Ryan Mills, 11. Tom O’Flaherty, 10. Robert du Preez, 9. Gus Warr; 1. Simon McIntyre, 2. Tommy Taylor, 3. Nick Schonert, 4. Cobus Wiese, 5. Josh Beaumont, 6. Jono Ross (c), 7. Sam Dugdale, 8. Jean-Luc du Preez 


16. Ewan Ashman, 17. Ross Harrison, 18. Joe Jones, 19. Alex Groves, 20. Rouban Birch, 21. Raffi Quirke, 22. Luke James, 23. Arron Reed 

Images & Content from Sale Sharks Rugby

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