Planet Rugby

Preview: Worcester v Newcastle

06th November 2009 08:29


Uche Oduoza

Falcons debut: Uche Oduoza

Winger Marcel Garvey returns to the Worcester team for their opening LV= Cup game against Newcastle on Saturday.

Clinical finisher Garvey is back in the starting line-up for the first time since injuring his hand against Montpellier in early October.

New Zealand ace Rico Gear moves to outside centre to join forces with Sam Tuitupou, with Alex Grove not considered for selection after an intensive three-day training camp with Scotland.

Full-back Chris Latham returns to the side after being ruled out for the league game at the Falcons last week with illness.

Three changes in the pack hands recalls for back row Netani Talei, before he links up with Fiji for international action, lock Will Bowley and prop Jack Gilding.

Academy prop Michael Hill and talented young scrum half Ollie Frost are two new faces on the replacements bench for Mike Ruddock's men.

Meanwhile, Newcastle have freshened up their squad for Saturday's LV= Cup trip to Worcester, making 12 changes from last week's winning side.

Left wing Uche Oduoza makes his Falcons debut against his former club, with the England Sevens international having racked up the tries for the Development Team following his summer move.

Cumbrian Mark Wilson starts on the openside flank, with the 20-year-old's form for Blaydon and the Newcastle second-string earning him a call-up to the senior side.

England U20s full-back Tom Catterick is another drafted in for his maiden start after impressing from the bench in the recent win over Albi, with scrum-half Hall Charlton captaining the side.

"Despite the number of changes, if you look at the side we have selected for this game there are actually a lot of experienced players in it," said Director of Rugby, Steve Bates.

"The likes of Mark Sorenson, Filipo Levi, Adam Balding, Micky Ward, Gcobani Bobo and Hall Charlton to name just a few are all senior players, and for me this team is an exciting mix of those guys alongside some of our best young talent.

"Some of these players haven't had as many starting opportunities as they would have liked this season, they are keen to state their case and I'm looking forward to seeing how they go."

The teams:

Worcester: 15 Chris Latham, 14 Marcel Garvey, 13 Rico Gear, 12 Sam Tuitupou, 11 Miles Benjamin, 10 Willie Walker, 9 Ryan Powell, 8 Netani Talei, 7 Pat Sanderson (capt), 6 Tom Wood, 5 Will Bowley, 4 Greg Rawlinson, 3 Jack Gilding, 2 Aleki Lutui, 1 Callum Black.
Replacements: 16 Michael Hill, 17 Chris Fortey, 18 Adam Black, 19 Craig Gillies, 20 Jake Abbott, 21 Ollie Frost, 22 George Crook, 23 Calum MacRae.

Newcastle: 15 Tom Catterick, 14 Danny Williams, 13 Alex Tait, 12 Gcobani Bobo, 11 Uche Oduoza, 10 Rob Miller, 9 Hall Charlton (capt), 8 Adam Balding, 7 Mark Wilson, 6 Peter Browne, 5 Mark Sorenson, 4 Filipo Levi, 3 Micky Ward, 2 Alex Walker, 1 Laurence Ovens.
Replacements: 16 Rob Vickers, 17 Grant Shiells, 18 Kieran Brookes, 19 Tim Swinson, 20 Josh Afu, 21 Chris Pilgrim, 22 Tom Biggs, 23 Charlie Amesbury.

Date: Saturday, November 7
Kick-off: 12:30 GMT
Venue: Sixways
Referee: Gwyn Morris (Wales)
Assistant referees: Peter Huckle (England), Andrew Pearce (England)
Assessor: Steve Lander (England)
Television match official: Matt Peters (England)

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