Preview: Wasps v Northampton

Date published: September 12 2014

Wasps boss Dai Young has made two changes to his starting XV for Sunday's clash with Northampton at Adams Park.

Wasps boss Dai Young has made two changes to his starting XV for Sunday's clash with Northampton at Adams Park.

Both changes are in the back-line. Andrea Masi starts at full-back, a straight swap for Rob Miller, who moves to the bench.

The other change sees Tom Varndell return to the wing, taking the place of Christian Wade.

On the omission of Wade, Young said: “Christian came into training today [Friday] in good condition physically but still a little shaken from his accident during the week, so I have taken the decision to leave him out of the side.

“We expect him to train fully next week and be back in contention for next weekend.”

Ahead of the clash against Northampton Saints, Young said: “After a tough opening game last weekend, the squad have reacted well in training this week.

“Northampton started their campaign very well last weekend and they showed exactly what they can do if their opposition are not on the money.

“We know what they will bring with them to Adams Park on Sunday and we know that we have to be better than we were last weekend if we want to get a result.”
Meanwhile, Saints boss Jim Mallinder has named an unchanged side as they hit the road for the first time in the 2014/15 season.

The side opened their title defence with an eight-try, 53-6 defeat of Gloucester at Franklin's Gardens last Friday evening and the exact same starting XV will take to the field at Adams Park.

Form: Wasps were defeated 28-34 by Saracens in the London double-header on Saturday and have not managed a single victory in any round 1 or 2 Aviva Premiership Rugby encounter since they beat Leicester in September 2011. Wasps defeated Newcastle on their most recent Premiership appearance at Adams Park but have not won successive matches at the venue in the competition since last October. Defending champions Northampton began their new campaign in style on Friday by inflicting a 53-6 score on Gloucester. The Saints are winless in their last three away games in the Premiership since their trip to Newcastle in February. Northampton have won their last ten encounters with Wasps in all tournaments since Wasps' 20-15 victory at Adams Park in the Premiership in October 2009.

The teams:

Wasps: 15 Andrea Masi, 14 Sailosi Tagicakibau, 13 Elliot Daly, 12 Chris Bell, 11 Tom Varndell, 10 Andy Goode, 9 Joe Simpson, 8 Nathan Hughes, 7 James Haskell (c) 6 Ashley Johnson, 5 James Gaskell , 4 Joe Launchbury, 3 Lorenzo Cittadini, 2 Carlo Festuccia, 1 Matt Mullan.
Replacements: 16 Tom Lindsay, 17 John Yapp, 18 Jake Cooper-Woolley, 19 Kearnan Myall, 20 Guy Thompson, 21 Charlie Davies, 22 Ruaridh Jackson, 23 Rob Miller.

Northampton: 15 James Wilson, 14 Ken Pisi, 13 George Pisi, 12 Luther Burrell, 11 George North, 10 Stephen Myler, 9 Lee Dickson, 8 Samu Manoa, 7 Tom Wood, 6 Calum Clark, 5 Christian Day, 4 Courtney Lawes, 3 Salesi Ma'afu, 2 Dylan Hartley (c), 1 Alex Corbisiero.
Replacements: 16 Ross McMillan, 17 Alex Waller, 18 Gareth Denman, 19 James Craig, 20 Jon Fisher 21 Kahn Fotuali'i,I 22 Will Hooley, 23 Ben Foden.

Date: Sunday, September 14
Kick-off: 14:00 BST
Venue: Adams Park
Referee: Luke Pearce
Assistant Referees: Andy Watson, Nigel Carrick
TMO: Geoff Warren