Planet Rugby



Preview: Newcastle v Leicester

16th September 2011 09:56


Julian White glaring for Leicester Tigers

White: Back in the fray

Julian White will make his first appearance of the season when Leicester take on Newcastle in an Aviva Premiership clash on Saturday.

White's start to the season was delayed by knee surgery but the experienced campaigner is now back to full fitness and immediately takes his place at tighthead.

In the only other change to the starting XV that lost to Wasps, Thomas Waldrom comes in at number eight after coming off the bench last time out.

Tom Youngs is brought into the matchday 22 for the first time this term while prop Michael Holford, who is on loan from Nottingham, is named amongst the replacements.

The Tigers are still without Craig Newby, Jordan Crane, Geoff Parling and Mathew Tait who are all out injured.

Newcastle coach coach Alan Tait has made just one change to the team that lost to Exeter last weekend with wing Alex Tait returning to the line-up after overcoming a slight hamstring strain.

Despite losing their first two games of the season, Tait insists that the mood in the camp is good.

"The lads have been buoyant this week and we have had some good training sessions," said the coach.

"The score-line at Exeter didn't do the boys any justice and I think we can draw a lot of positives from those first two matches. Apart from the try, we played some of our best rugby in the first-half against Exeter last week."

Jamie Helleur (hamstring), Andrew van der Heijden (Ribs), Ryan Shortland (foot) and Jonny Golding (Achilles) were not considered due to injury.

Form: Newcastle Falcons are in the midst of their worst ever run in the Premiership - nine straight defeats, and are the only team in Aviva Premiership Rugby with no points from their opening two games. Leicester Tigers picked up a second successive losing bonus point at Wasps on Sunday and have now slipped to three consecutive Premiership defeats - a sequence that just once before has been "trumped" when they lost five in a row in October-November 2003. The Tigers have won their last four games against the Falcons, whilst Leicester's record in previous visits to Kingston Park in the Premiership is won 5, drawn 2, lost 6.

Rugby Union betting odds

The teams:

Newcastle Falcons: 15 Greg Goosen, 14 Luke Fielden, 13 Luke Eves, 12 James Fitzpatrick, 11 Alex Tait, 10 Jimmy Gopperth, 9 Chris Pilgrim, 8 Richard Mayhew, 7 Will Welch, 6 Mark Wilson, 5 Tim Swinson, 4 James Hudson, 3 Ashley Wells, 2 Rob Vickers, 1 Grant Shiells.
Replacements: 16 Joe Graham, 17 Darren Fearn, 18 James Hall, 19 Glen Townson, 20 Ally Hogg, 21 Jordi Pasqualin, 22 Rikki Sheriffe, 23 Tom Catterick,

Leicester Tigers: 15 Scott Hamilton, 14 Matt Smith, 13 Billy Twelvetrees, 12 Anthony Allen, 11 Niall Morris, 10 George Ford, 9 James Grindal, 8 Thomas Waldrom, 7 Julian Salvi, 6 Steve Mafi, 5 George Skivington, 4 Ed Slater, 3 Julian White, 2 George Chuter (capt), 1 Boris Stankovich.
Replacements: 16 Tom Youngs 17 Michael Holford 18 Kieran Brookes 19 Graham Kitchener 20 Ben Woods 21 Mickey Young 22 Jeremy Staunton 23 Andy Forsyth

Date: Saturday, September 17
Venue: Kingston Park
Kick-off: 15.05 BST (14.05 GMT)
Referee: JP Doyle

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