Preview: London Welsh v Sale

Date published: February 13 2015

1022.6666666666666x767__origin__0x0_Rob_Lewis_London_Welsh

Rob Lewis will make his 100th league appearance for London Welsh in Sunday's Premiership fixture against Sale Sharks at the Kassam Stadium.

In doing so, the scrum-half will become just the 13th London Welsh player to reach the century milestone, joining the likes of Paul Sampson, Jonathan Mills and Lorne Ward, as well as current club captain Matt Corker and assistant coach Gordon Ross.

Lewis, who has made 132 appearances for the club in total since joining from Newport Gwent Dragons in 2009, is one of eight changes, including two positional, from the London Welsh side defeated 17-13 at the Dragons last weekend.

The London Welsh starting lineup includes nine members of its Championship winning side from last season, with five more named on the bench.

Also in the backs, Seb Stegmann returns on the right wing with Olly Barkley named at fly-half. Seb Jewell moves from inside centre to full-back, with James Tincknell taking the number 12 jersey.

In the forwards, Koree Britton starts at hooker and Richard Thorpe moves from blindside to openside flanker, with Carl Kirwan coming back into the side.

Meanwhile, Sale have made three changes from the team that cruised past the Scarlets last weekend, 38-3.

Will Addison comes onto the wing for Mark Cueto, Chris Cusiter replaces Will Cliff at scrum-half and Tommy Taylor starts at hooker ahead of Marc Jones. 

Form: London Welsh have lost all 23 games they have played in all competitions this season, however they have at least managed to score their first losing bonus points of the season in each of their last three matches. The Exiles have won just one of their last 25 Aviva Premiership Rugby matches: 33-22 at home to Worcester Warriors in May 2013. Sale Sharks’ 20-7 victory at home to Northampton in round 13 of Aviva Premiership Rugby ended a two game losing run in the competition. The Sharks have lost their last four away games in all tournaments since beating Newcastle Falcons at Kingston Park in Aviva Premiership Rugby on 30th November. The two sides have met on three previous occasions in Premiership Rugby with the Exiles only victory being 29-19 at AJ Bell Stadium in September 2012. 

The teams:

London Welsh: 15 Seb Jewell, 14 Seb Stegmann, 13 Nic Reynolds, 12 James Tincknell, 11 Nick Scott, 10 Olly Barkley, 9 Rob Lewis, 8 Opeti Fonua 7 Carl Kirwan (C), 6 Richard Thorpe, 5 James Down, 4 Ben West, 3 Taione Vea, 2 Koree Britton, 1 Nathan Trevett.
Replacements: 16 Nathan Morris, 17 Eddie Aholelei, 18 Jack Gilding, 19 Matt Corker, 20 Ben Pienaar, 21 Piri Weepu, 22 Will Robinson, 23 James Lewis

Sale Sharks: 15 Mike Haley, 14 Will Addison, 13 Johnny Leota, 12 Sam Tuitupou, 11 Tom Arscott, 10 Nick Macleod, 9 Chris Cusiter, 8 Josh Beaumont. 7 David Seymour, 6 Dan Braid (capt), 5 Nathan Hines, 4 Jonathan Mills, 3 Vadim Cobilas, 2 Tommy Taylor, 1 Eifion Lewis Roberts.
Replacements: 16 Marc Jones, 17 Maxim Cobilas, 18 Ross Harrison, 19 Magnus Lund, 20 Mark Easter, 21 Will Cliff, 22 Joe Ford, 23 Mark Cueto

Date: Sunday, February 15
Venue: Kassam Stadium
Kick-off: 14.30 GMT
Referee: Tim Wigglesworth
Assistant referees: Darren Gamage & Peter Huckle

COMMENTS