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Three changes for Saints ahead of trip to Bath

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Matt Proctor, Lewis Ludlam and Lukhan Salakaia-Loto all return to Northampton Saints’ starting line-up this weekend as Director of Rugby Phil Dowson makes three changes to his side to face Bath.The men in Black, Green and Gold travel to the Rec on Saturday afternoon (kick-off: 3pm, broadcast on PRTV Live) having won their last four matches in all competitions with a bonus point.Saints recorded a season’s double over Bath last term for the first time since the 2015/16 campaign, and will be looking to extend that winning run in the West Country.England international Ludlam returns to the back row to captain Saints, with Alex Coles keeping his spot at blindside flanker and Juarno Augustus – who scored his tenth Northampton try in the win over Newcastle Falcons last week – selected at No.8.Salakaia-Loto meanwhile is called into the engine room in the only other change to Saints’ pack, with David Ribbans continuing at lock and Dowson opting with an unchanged front row of Alex Waller, Sam Matavesi and Paul Hill.Northampton have been fluid in attack so far this season, making more metres (3,238) with the ball in hand and throwing more offloads (85) than any other team in the league, and there’s just one change to the back line this week with Proctor replacing the injured Rory Hutchinson in the centres for his 50th appearance in the Gallagher Premiership.Fraser Dingwall (who has crossed the gainline 36 times so far this season, more than any other player in the league) completes Saints’ midfield with the visitors’ half-back combination of James Grayson and Alex Mitchell unchanged inside him.Tom Collins and Ollie Sleightholme, both of whom crossed the whitewash last weekend, continue in the back three with the in-form George Furbank selected at fullback. The 26-year-old England international has made the second-most metres (467) of anyone in the Gallagher Premiership so far, and more carries (68) than any other back.Saints’ bench is packed full of youth with the likes of Emmanuel Iyogun, Alfie Petch, Tom Litchfield and George Hendy hoping to make an impact if they enter the action.BATH RUGBY vs NORTHAMPTON SAINTSGallagher Premiership Rugby, Round 7Saturday 22 October 2022The Recreation GroundKick-off: 3pm15 George Furbank14 Tom Collins13 Matt Proctor – 50th Premiership appearance12 Fraser Dingwall11 Ollie Sleightholme10 James Grayson9 Alex Mitchell1 Alex Waller2 Sam Matavesi3 Paul Hill4 Lukhan Salakaia-Loto5 David Ribbans6 Alex Coles7 Lewis Ludlam (c)8 Juarno AugustusReplacements:16 Robbie Smith17 Emmanuel Iyogun18 Alfie Petch19 Alex Moon20 Sam Graham21 Tom James22 Tom Litchfield23 George HendyNot considered for selection:Matthew Arden, Dan Biggar, Tommy Freeman, Aston Gradwick-Light, Rory Hutchinson, Courtney Lawes, George Patten, Courtnall Skosan, and Karl Wilkins.Referee: Anthony WoodthorpeAssistant Referees: Nick Wood and Simon HardingNo.4: Harry WalbaumTMO: Stuart TerheegeBATH TEAM TO PLAY SAINTS15 Matt Gallagher, 14 Joe Cokanasiga, 13 Ollie Lawrence, 12 Cameron Redpath, 11 Will Butt, 10 George Worboys, 9 Louis Schreuder; 1 Juan Schoeman, 2 Tom Dunn (c), 3 Aranos Coetzee, 4 Dave Attwood, 5 Quinn Roux, 6 Josh Bayliss, 7 Miles Reid, 8 Richard de CarpentierReplacements: 16 Niall Annett, 17 Arthur Cordwell, 18 D’Arcy Rae, 19 Fergus Lee-Warner, 20 Ted Hill, 21 Tom Carr-Smith, 22 Billy Searle, 23 Max Ojomoh

Matt Proctor, Lewis Ludlam and Lukhan Salakaia-Loto all return to Northampton Saints’ starting line-up this weekend as Director of Rugby Phil Dowson makes three changes to his side to face Bath.

The men in Black, Green and Gold travel to the Rec on Saturday afternoon (kick-off: 3pm, broadcast on PRTV Live) having won their last four matches in all competitions with a bonus point.

Saints recorded a season’s double over Bath last term for the first time since the 2015/16 campaign, and will be looking to extend that winning run in the West Country.

England international Ludlam returns to the back row to captain Saints, with Alex Coles keeping his spot at blindside flanker and Juarno Augustus – who scored his tenth Northampton try in the win over Newcastle Falcons last week – selected at No.8.

Salakaia-Loto meanwhile is called into the engine room in the only other change to Saints’ pack, with David Ribbans continuing at lock and Dowson opting with an unchanged front row of Alex Waller, Sam Matavesi and Paul Hill.

Northampton have been fluid in attack so far this season, making more metres (3,238) with the ball in hand and throwing more offloads (85) than any other team in the league, and there’s just one change to the back line this week with Proctor replacing the injured Rory Hutchinson in the centres for his 50th appearance in the Gallagher Premiership.

Fraser Dingwall (who has crossed the gainline 36 times so far this season, more than any other player in the league) completes Saints’ midfield with the visitors’ half-back combination of James Grayson and Alex Mitchell unchanged inside him.

Tom Collins and Ollie Sleightholme, both of whom crossed the whitewash last weekend, continue in the back three with the in-form George Furbank selected at fullback. The 26-year-old England international has made the second-most metres (467) of anyone in the Gallagher Premiership so far, and more carries (68) than any other back.

Saints’ bench is packed full of youth with the likes of Emmanuel Iyogun, Alfie Petch, Tom Litchfield and George Hendy hoping to make an impact if they enter the action.

BATH RUGBY vs NORTHAMPTON SAINTS
Gallagher Premiership Rugby, Round 7
Saturday 22 October 2022
The Recreation Ground
Kick-off: 3pm

15 George Furbank
14 Tom Collins
13 Matt Proctor – 50th Premiership appearance
12 Fraser Dingwall
11 Ollie Sleightholme
10 James Grayson
9 Alex Mitchell

1 Alex Waller
2 Sam Matavesi
3 Paul Hill
4 Lukhan Salakaia-Loto
5 David Ribbans
6 Alex Coles
7 Lewis Ludlam (c)
8 Juarno Augustus

Replacements:
16 Robbie Smith
17 Emmanuel Iyogun
18 Alfie Petch
19 Alex Moon
20 Sam Graham
21 Tom James
22 Tom Litchfield
23 George Hendy

Not considered for selection:
Matthew Arden, Dan Biggar, Tommy Freeman, Aston Gradwick-Light, Rory Hutchinson, Courtney Lawes, George Patten, Courtnall Skosan, and Karl Wilkins.

Referee: Anthony Woodthorpe
Assistant Referees: Nick Wood and Simon Harding
No.4: Harry Walbaum
TMO: Stuart Terheege

BATH TEAM TO PLAY SAINTS
15 Matt Gallagher, 14 Joe Cokanasiga, 13 Ollie Lawrence, 12 Cameron Redpath, 11 Will Butt, 10 George Worboys, 9 Louis Schreuder; 1 Juan Schoeman, 2 Tom Dunn (c), 3 Aranos Coetzee, 4 Dave Attwood, 5 Quinn Roux, 6 Josh Bayliss, 7 Miles Reid, 8 Richard de Carpentier
Replacements: 16 Niall Annett, 17 Arthur Cordwell, 18 D’Arcy Rae, 19 Fergus Lee-Warner, 20 Ted Hill, 21 Tom Carr-Smith, 22 Billy Searle, 23 Max Ojomoh

Content & Images from – Northampton Saints Rugby


Premiership

Tom Wood to captain Barbarians for showdown with Saints

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Northampton Saints legend Tom Wood will lead out Barbarian F.C. at cinch Stadium at Franklin’s Gardens for tomorrow afternoon’s clash between the two sides.The world-famous invitational side will lock horns with the men in Black, Green and Gold for the first time in history on Saturday (kick-off: 3pm), and with Saints close to full strength for the exhibition match, the BaaBaas have selected a side packed with star quality to run out in Northampton.Wood captains the team and lines up in the No.8 jersey alongside Cardiff Rugby flanker Olly Robinson and former Wasps back row Ben Morris.Elliott Stooke and Graham Kitchener – formerly of Wasps and Worcester Warriors respectively – are selected in the engine room, with an explosive front row including Scotland international Murray McCallum, All Black Hika Elliot, and Stormers tighthead Brok Harris.Former England international Danny Cipriani starts at fly-half, with Gareth Simpson in the No.9 jersey and Wales international Owen Williams filling a second playmaker role at inside centre.Outside the former Worcester player in midfield is another Saints legend in Luther Burrell, who runs out at the Gardens berth for one final appearance in the UK before making the switch to Japan.And the Barbarians’ back-three is full of pace and power with England’s Marland Yarde and Zach Kibirige set to start on the wings, with Wales international Jonah Holmes completing the line-up at fullback.A limited number of tickets remain for the fixture, starting from £22 adult / £8 junior*. PLEASE CLICK HERE to purchase now.BARBARIAN F.C. SIDE TO FACE NORTHAMPTON SAINTSSaturday 26 November 2022cinch Stadium at Franklin’s GardensKick-off: 3pm15 Jonah Holmes14 Zach Kibirige13 Luther Burrell12 Owen Williams11 Marland Yarde10 Danny Cipriani9 Gareth Simpson1 Murray McCallum2 Hika Elliot3 Brok Harris4 Graham Kitchener5 Elliott Stooke6 Ben Morris7 Olly Robinson8 Tom Wood (c)Replacements:16 Tevita Ikanivere17 Ben Harris18 Elliot Millar-Mills19 Lloyd Ashley20 Will Boyde21 Francois Hougaard22 Mali Hingano23 Perry Humphreys

Northampton Saints legend Tom Wood will lead out Barbarian F.C. at cinch Stadium at Franklin’s Gardens for tomorrow afternoon’s clash between the two sides.

The world-famous invitational side will lock horns with the men in Black, Green and Gold for the first time in history on Saturday (kick-off: 3pm), and with Saints close to full strength for the exhibition match, the BaaBaas have selected a side packed with star quality to run out in Northampton.

Wood captains the team and lines up in the No.8 jersey alongside Cardiff Rugby flanker Olly Robinson and former Wasps back row Ben Morris.

Elliott Stooke and Graham Kitchener – formerly of Wasps and Worcester Warriors respectively – are selected in the engine room, with an explosive front row including Scotland international Murray McCallum, All Black Hika Elliot, and Stormers tighthead Brok Harris.

Former England international Danny Cipriani starts at fly-half, with Gareth Simpson in the No.9 jersey and Wales international Owen Williams filling a second playmaker role at inside centre.

Outside the former Worcester player in midfield is another Saints legend in Luther Burrell, who runs out at the Gardens berth for one final appearance in the UK before making the switch to Japan.

And the Barbarians’ back-three is full of pace and power with England’s Marland Yarde and Zach Kibirige set to start on the wings, with Wales international Jonah Holmes completing the line-up at fullback.

A limited number of tickets remain for the fixture, starting from £22 adult / £8 junior*. PLEASE CLICK HERE to purchase now.

BARBARIAN F.C. SIDE TO FACE NORTHAMPTON SAINTS
Saturday 26 November 2022
cinch Stadium at Franklin’s Gardens
Kick-off: 3pm

15 Jonah Holmes
14 Zach Kibirige
13 Luther Burrell
12 Owen Williams
11 Marland Yarde
10 Danny Cipriani
9 Gareth Simpson

1 Murray McCallum
2 Hika Elliot
3 Brok Harris
4 Graham Kitchener
5 Elliott Stooke
6 Ben Morris
7 Olly Robinson
8 Tom Wood (c)

Replacements:
16 Tevita Ikanivere
17 Ben Harris
18 Elliot Millar-Mills
19 Lloyd Ashley
20 Will Boyde
21 Francois Hougaard
22 Mali Hingano
23 Perry Humphreys

Content & Images from – Northampton Saints Rugby


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TEAM NEWS | Sale Sharks v Bristol Bears

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Sam James makes his 200th Sharks appearance, Cobus Wiese and Akker van der Merwe return from injury and Rouban Birch and Kieran Wilkinson are rewarded for their cup heroics with places on the replacements bench for the Saturday lunchtime Premiership clash with Bristol Bears (KO 1pm – live on BT Sport).

Jean-Luc and Dan du Preez also return to the Sharks line-up after featuring for South Africa A, while Jono Ross captains the side for the round 11 showdown with Pat Lam’s men.

Springbok hooker Van der Merwe returns to the number two shirt after six weeks out with an ankle injury picked up against London Irish in October, and he takes his place in the front row between the experienced pair of Ross Harrison and Nick Schonert.

Wiese also returns from ankle lay-off to partner Josh Beaumont in the second row, while the Du Preez twins line-up alongside skipper Ross in the back row.

Gus Warr lines up again at scrum-half alongside fly-half Rob du Preez, and in the centres, Sam Hill starts with the ever-present Sam James, who plays his 200th game for his boyhood club.

Tom Roebuck and Byron McGuigan start on the wings, with full-back Joe Carpenter making up a pacy back three.

Academy products Tommy Taylor and fit-again Simon McIntyre provide front-row cover on the bench, along with Joe Jones, who will be playing his 50th Sharks game if he takes the field.

Sam Dugdale and Friday night’s Premiership Rugby Cup player of the match Birch cover the rest of the forwards.

Joe Simpson, Wilkinson and Arron Reed are the backs replacements.

Sale Sharks Starting XV:

15. Joe Carpenter, 14. Tom Roebuck, 13. Sam James, 12. Sam Hill, 11. Byron McGuigan, 10. Robert du Preez, 9. Gus Warr; 1. Ross Harrison, 2. Akker van der Merwe, 3. Nick Schonert, 4. Cobus Wiese, 5. Josh Beaumont, 6. JL du Preez, 7. Jono Ross ©, 8. Daniel du Preez

Replacements:

16. Tommy Taylor, 17. Simon McIntyre, 18. Joe Jones, 19. Rouban Birch, 20. Sam Dugdale, 21. Joe Simpson, 22. Kieran Wilkinson, 23. Arron Reed.

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Falcons forward heads to France

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Thursday 24 November 2022

Lock-forward George Merrick has left Newcastle Falcons to join a French club with immediate effect.

The 30-year-old has made 13 appearances since joining from Worcester Warriors in the summer of 2021, and leaves with the thanks and best wishes of the club.

Newcastle Falcons head coach Dave Walder said: “George has been offered an exciting playing opportunity over in France and we wish him all the best for his move.

“He has been a positive presence around our squad during his time here, and on behalf of the entire coaching team I’d like to thank him for his contribution.”

Merrick said: “I’ve loved my time in Newcastle with a great bunch of boys, and I’m looking forward now to this new challenge.”

Source – Newcastle Falcons Rugby


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