Planet Rugby

Preview: London Irish vs Worcester

25th January 2013 09:23

Share:

Sailosi Tagicakibau Worcester v London Irish Aviva Premiership Sixways

Back in action: Sailosi Tagicakibau

Wing David Lemi and centre Josh Matavesi are both recalled as Worcester Warriors resume LV= Cup action with an away trip to London Irish.

Samoa captain Lemi features for the first time since the narrow league defeat to Leicester Tigers in early January while Matavesi is recalled to partner Jon Clarke in midfield.

Props Ceri Jones and James Currie are also handed starting spots while impressive young flanker Richard De Carpentier is also selected.

"It is a big game and we understand that London Irish are really going to go for it too. But we are in a good position; we are top of the league at the moment," said Worcester head coach Richard Hill.

"Next week we are playing Saracens at home and they are missing quite a few of their players, including their backs with the England call-ups, so we have a huge opportunity there.

"London Irish are really going to put a strong side out. However, last time they played here we managed to win and get the bonus try and it went very well. That'll be in our minds and we have talked about how we did that last time and try to replicate that."

Meanwhile, London Irish will be bolstered this weekend by the return of Sailosi Tagicakibau to the starting line-up against Worcester Warriors.

The Samoa International will join Guy Armitage in the centres with Shane Geraghty and Pat Phibbs the starting half-backs. Geraghty will again captain the side.

Phibbs and Canadian International, Jebb Sinclair, come back in after missing the last two rounds of the Amlin cup.

Our opponents on Sunday are also joint top of their Pool so like us they have a lot to play for. Worcester have a very strong squad and we're expecting an epic cup battle," said London Irish boss Brian Smith.

Irish also confirmed the signings of Mike Mayhew and Davey McGregor on short-term loan deals from Newcastle and Coventry respectively.

Form: London Irish have won their last three games in all competitions but have not won four in succession since October 2010. The Exiles' last eight fixtures in the LV= Cup have all been won by the home side on the day, and they have not lost at Madejski Stadium in the tournament since Scarlets were the visitors in November 2010. Worcester Warriors' only two away wins since New Year's Day 2012 were in Spain against Gernika and in Italy against Rovigo in the European Challenge Cup. Worcester have not won on the road in the LV= Cup since a trip to Harlequins on 3 November 2007. The two clubs have met on three previous occasions in the Anglo-Welsh Cup with the Warriors having the edge by two wins to one, with all victories being gained by the home side on the day. Worcester's only previous victory at Madejski Stadium was 20-15 in the Premiership on 11 September 2005.

The teams:

London Irish: 15 Tom Homer, 14 Topsy Ojo, 13 Guy Armitage, 12 Sailosi Tagicakibau, 11 Marland Yarde, 10 Shane Geraghty (c), 9 Pat Phibbs, 8 Chris Hala'ufia, 7 Jebb Sinclair, 6 Matt Garvey, 5 Bryn Evans, 4 George Skivington, 3 Halani Aulika, 2 Mike Mayhew, 1 Max Lahiff.
Replacements: 16 Davey McGregor, 17 Jerry Yanuyanutawa, 18 Leo Halavatau, 19 Kieran Low, 20 Alex Gray, 21 Anthony Watson, 22 Ian Humphreys, 23 Jack Moates.

Worcester: 15 Ernie Claassens, 14 Josh Drauniniu, 13 Jon Clarke, 12 Josh Matavesi, 11 David Lemi, 10 Danny Gray, 9 Jonny Arr, 8 Blair Cowan, 7 Jake Abbott, 6 Richard de Carpentier, 5 Craig Gillies, 4 Dean Schofield (c), 3 James Currie, 2 Ollie Hayes, 1 Ceri Jones.
Replacements: 16 Ed Shervington, 17 Rob O'Donnell, 18 John Andress, 19 James Percival, 20 Sam Betty, 21 Ollie Frost, 22 Andy Goode, 23 Andy Short.

Date: Sunday, January 27
Kick-off: 15:00
Venue: Madejski Stadium
Referee: Leighton Hodges (Wales)
Assistant referees: Andrew Watson (England), Peter Huckle (England)
Timekeeper: John Burtenshaw (England)

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , September 19
Gloucester vs Exeter19:45
Saturday , September 20
Sale vs London Welsh14:00
London Irish vs Saracens15:00
Harlequins vs Wasps15:00
Bath vs Leicester15:15
Sunday , September 21
Newcastle vs Northampton14:00
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Friday , September 19
Munster vs Zebre19:30
Cardiff Blues vs Ulster19:35
Connacht vs Leinster19:35
Saturday , September 20
Newport Gwent D'gons vs Glasgow14:40
Scarlets vs Benetton Treviso18:00
Sunday , September 21
Ospreys vs Edinburgh16:00
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
Top 14
Friday , September 19
Brive vs Toulon18:00
Saturday , September 20
Racing Metro Paris vs Toulouse18:00
La Rochelle vs Bordeaux-Begles18:00
Clermont Auvergne vs Lyon18:00
Castres vs Oyonnax18:00
Grenoble vs Bayonne18:00
Montpellier vs Stade Francais18:00
More Top 14 fixtures
Currie Cup
Friday , September 19
Lions vs Pumas19:10
Saturday , September 20
Western Province vs Griquas15:00
Blue Bulls vs Sharks17:05
Eastern Province Kings vs Cheetahs19:10
More Currie Cup fixtures
ITM Cup
Wednesday, September 17
Southland vs TasmanSouthland vs Tasman Preview
Thursday , September 18
Northland vs Taranaki19:35
More ITM Cup fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , September 14
Wasps 20 - 16 NorthamptonWasps vs Northampton Report
Newcastle 18 - 20 London IrishNewcastle vs London Irish Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Guinness PRO12
Cardiff Blues 12 - 33 GlasgowCardiff Blues vs Glasgow Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Top 14
Bordeaux-Begles 27 - 21 MontpellierBordeaux-Begles vs Montpellier Report
More Top 14 results
ITM Cup
Waikato 26 - 21 Counties ManukauWaikato vs Counties Manukau Report
Hawkes Bay 41 - 0 Otago
More ITM Cup results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , September 13
Gloucester 34 - 27 Sale SharksGloucester vs Sale Sharks Report
Bath 53 - 26 London WelshBath vs London Welsh Report
Exeter 20 - 24 LeicesterExeter vs Leicester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Rugby Championship
New Zealand 14 - 10 South AfricaNew Zealand vs South Africa Report
Australia 32 - 25 ArgentinaAustralia vs Argentina Report
More Rugby Championship results
Guinness PRO12
Leinster 42 - 12 ScarletsLeinster vs Scarlets Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Top 14
Toulouse 9 - 13 Clermont AuvergneToulouse vs Clermont Auvergne Report
Racing Metro Paris 28 - 11 LyonRacing Metro Paris vs Lyon Report
Bayonne 23 - 6 Brive
Oyonnax 40 - 27 Grenoble
Toulon 24 - 28 Stade FrancaisToulon vs Stade Francais Report
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Griquas 31 - 27 PumasGriquas vs Pumas Report
Cheetahs 30 - 30 SharksCheetahs vs Sharks Report
Lions 35 - 33 Western ProvinceLions vs Western Province Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Bay Of Plenty 12 - 27 AucklandBay Of Plenty vs Auckland Report
Southland 36 - 34 Northland
More ITM Cup results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , September 12
Harlequins 0 - 39 SaracensHarlequins vs Saracens Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Guinness PRO12
Benetton Treviso 10 - 21 MunsterBenetton Treviso vs Munster Report
Newport Gwent D'gons 15 - 17 Ospreys
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Saracens29
2Bath29
3Leicester Tigers29
4Exeter26
5Northampton26