London Irish v Northampton Saints Premiership Preview

London Irish host Northampton Saints at the Madejski Stadium

London Irish have named lock Matt Symons as captain of their team to play Northampton Saints in the Aviva Premiership at the the Madesjki Stadium.

Tom Court and Ben Franks start in the front row alongside David Paice, who returns after missing the last two European Challenge Cup fixtures. Nic Rouse partners Matt Symons in the second row with Luke Narraway, Blair Cowan and Ofisa Treviranus in the back row.

Brendan McKibbin and Chris Noakes form the half back pairing with Johnny Williams and Canadian international, Ciaran Hearn in the midfield. Aseli Tikoirotuma, Alex Lewington and Sean Maitland make up the back three.

London Irish Head Coach Tom Coventry said: “On behalf of the Club, I would firstly like to wish all of our supporters a very Merry Christmas. We hope you enjoy the festivities with family and friends.”

“The squad have worked hard this week and responded well to the result in Edinburgh last Friday. Northampton are a top side and we know the challenge we face on Saturday but we have prepared well and will go out and put in a passionate performance in front of our families and supporters.”

London Irish are still without a league point in the first six rounds of Aviva Premiership Rugby this season. The Exiles have however easily won their two home games at Madejski Stadium in the European Challenge Cup, over Agen and Edinburgh.

Northampton Saints have won their last two Premiership Rugby encounters, at home to Gloucester and at Bath, but have scored just one try in their last four matches in all competitions: by Luther Burrell against Bath on 5th December.

Northampton have won their last six fixtures against London Irish in all competitions since the Exiles 39-17 victory at Madejski Stadium in Premiership Rugby on 6th October 2012.

Northampton Saints have made seven changes in all from the team which ran out against Racing-92 last weekend, with Ken Pisi and Kahn Fotuali’i coming into the back line and Ethan Waller, Dylan Hartley, Paul Hill, Michael Paterson and Christian Day making up a new front five in the pack.

With Lee Dickson among the replacements Hartley has been chosen to lead the team out at the Madesjki Stadium.

Match : London Irish v Northampton Saints
Date : Saturday 26 December
Kick Off : 2.30pm
Venue : Madejski Stadium
Match Officials
Referee : Ian Tempest (11th Premiership game).
Assistant referees : Ashley Rowden & Gareth Copsey.
TMO: David Sainsbury


London Irish

15. Sean Maitland*; 14. Alex Lewington; 13. Ciaran Hearn*; 12.Johnny Williams; 11. Aseli Tikoirotuma*; 10. Chris Noakes; 9. Brendan McKibbin; 1. Tom Court*; 2. David Paice* 3. Ben Franks*; 4. Matt Symons (Captain); 5. Nic Rouse; 6. Luke Narraway*; 7. Blair Cowan*; 8. Ofisa Treviranus*

Replacements: 16. Jimmy Stevens; 17. Tom Smallbone; 18. Halani Aulika*; 19. Joe Trayfoot; 20. Jebb Sinclair*; 21. Scott Steele; 22. Shane Geraghty*; 23. Fergus Mulchrone

*Denotes Internationals


15 Ben Foden, 14 Ken Pisi, 13 George Pisi, 12 Luther Burrell, 11 George North, 10 Stephen Myler, 9 Kahn Fotuali’i, 8 Teimana Harrison, 7 Jamie Gibson, 6 Courtney Lawes, 5 Christian Day, 4 Michael Paterson, 3 Paul Hill, 2 Dylan Hartley (c), 1 Ethan Waller

Replacements: 16 Mikey Haywood, 17 Alex Waller, 18 Gareth Denman, 19 Victor Matfield, 20 Sam Dickinson, 21 Lee Dickson, 22 JJ Harrahan, 23 Tom Collins

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.