Planet Rugby

Preview: Wasps v Harlequins

06th September 2013 10:37

Share:

Five players will make their starting debuts for London Wasps when they take on Harlequins at the London Double Header on Saturday.

Andy Goode, Matt Mullan, Jake Cooper-Woolley, Guy Thompson and Ed Jackson will all start for Dai Young's side, with Sam Jones captaining the team in the absence of Chris Bell, who hasn't quite recovered from a minor infection.

Andrea Masi fills the full-back shirt flanked by Christian Wade and Tom Varndell on the wings. Charlie Hayter and Ben Jacobs, in his second stint at the club, are the centre pairing, while Goode and Joe Simpson are the half-backs.

Mullan packs down with Tom Lindsay and youngster Cooper-Woolley, who has impressed in pre-season, with Joe Launchbury and Tom Palmer forming the second-row partnership.

Jones skippers the side on the blindside flank, alongside two newcomers, Jackson and Thompson who have both been hugely impressive since joining in the off-season.

"After what has been a long but hugely productive pre-season period, everyone at the club is excited to get the competitive matches underway this weekend," said Young.

"The intensity in training over the last couple of weeks has noticeably increased as we have neared the start of the new season and everyone in the squad has been keen to state their case for a starting shirt.

"This weekend we face a very accomplished side in the form of Harlequins who will test our systems extensively. We know that it will take the new players we have and the new systems we have introduced a while to bed in, but we showed last year the talent that we have at this club and we are looking forward to trying to build on that."

Meanwhile, Paul Sackey and Academy member George Merrick make their competitive debuts for Harlequins on the wing and in the second-row respectively on Saturday.

In the backs, Mike Brown starts at full-back with Ugo Monye on the wing. George Lowe, who signed a contract extension this week to keep him at the club until 2016, is named in the centres with Jordan Turner-Hall, while Danny Care and Nick Evans complete the backline.

Will Collier starts at tighthead prop with Joe Gray and Joe Marler forming the front-row.

George Robson partners Merrick in the second-row, while Luke Wallace, Nick Easter and captain, Chris Robshaw make up the back-row.

Among the replacements, new signing Paul Doran Jones is named while Charlie Walker, Ben Botica and Karl Dickson cover the backline.

Players unavailable for selection include Tom Williams and Sam Smith, who are out with short term injuries. Both are expected to be available for the A team game on Monday night against London Irish. The more long term injuries include Nick Kennedy who exacerbated a knee condition in pre-season which has required surgery.

Kennedy is expected to return alongside Charlie Matthews (shoulder) in November. Ollie Lindsay Hague (shoulder) and Ross Chisholm (knee) picked up injuries playing in the JP Morgan 7's and will be available for selection in December and May (2014) respectively.

Form: London Wasps have a won 4, drawn 1, lost 3 record in previous London Double Headers. Wasps only win at Twickenham in their last five visits was 20-15 in the 2011 London Double Header against Saracens. Wasps have lost their last eight matches in all competitions - their poorest run of the professional era. Harlequins have lost just one of their past six London Double Headers: 15-26 to London Wasps in 2009. Quins only defeat in their last seven visits to Twickenham was 11-19 on 27 December 2011. Wasps 17-16 victory at the Twickenham Stoop in Aviva Premiership Rugby last February ended a seven game winless run against Harlequins in all competitions, whilst their three previous encounters in the London Double Header have been evenly split with a win apiece plus a draw.

The teams:

London Wasps: 15 Andrea Masi, 14 Christian Wade, 13 Ben Jacobs, 12 Charlie Hayter, 11 Tom Varndell, 10 Andy Goode, 9 Joe Simpson, 8 Ed Jackson, 7 Guy Thompson, 6 Sam Jones (capt), 5 Tom Palmer, 4 Joe Launchbury, 3 Jake Cooper-Woolley, 2 Tom Lindsay, 1 Matt Mullan.
Replacements: 16 Neil Cochrane, 17 Simon McIntyre, 18 Will Taylor, 19 James Cannon, 20 Ashley Johnson, 21 Charlie Davies, 22 Joe Carlisle, 23 Tommy Bell.

Harlequins: 15 Mike Brown, 14 Paul Sackey, 13 George Lowe, 12 Jordan Turner-Hall, 11 Ugo Monye, 10 Nick Evans, 9 Danny Care, 8 Nick Easter, 7 Chris Robshaw (capt), 6 Luke Wallace, 5 George Robson, 4 George Merrick, 3 Will Collier, 2 Joe Gray, 1 Joe Marler.
Replacements: 16 Rob Buchanan, 17 Mark Lambert, 18 Paul Doran Jones, 19 Maurie Fa'asavalu, 20 Tom Guest, 21 Karl Dickson, 22 Ben Botica, 23 Charlie Walker.

Date: Saturday, September 7
Venue: Twickenham Stadium
Kick-off: 16.30 BST (15.30 GMT)
Referee: Tim Wigglesworth

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , September 5
Northampton vs Gloucester19:45
Saturday , September 6
Saracens vs Wasps14:00
Sale vs Bath14:00
Leicester vs Newcastle15:00
London Irish vs Harlequins16:30
Sunday , September 7
London Welsh vs Exeter14:00
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
Rugby Championship
Saturday , September 6
New Zealand vs Argentina08:35
Australia vs South Africa11:05
More Rugby Championship fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Friday , September 5
Ospreys vs Benetton Treviso19:35
Munster vs Edinburgh19:35
Saturday , September 6
Scarlets vs Ulster14:40
Connacht vs Newport Gwent D'gons17:00
Glasgow vs Leinster17:15
Sunday , September 7
Zebre vs Cardiff Blues17:00
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
Top 14
Friday , September 5
Montpellier vs Castres20:45
Saturday , September 6
Brive vs Toulouse14:45
Clermont Auvergne vs Racing Metro Paris17:00
Lyon vs Oyonnax18:30
Stade Francais vs Bayonne18:30
Grenoble vs La Rochelle18:30
Toulon vs Bordeaux-Begles20:45
More Top 14 fixtures
Currie Cup
Friday , September 5
Western Province vs Eastern Province Kings19:10
Saturday , September 6
Cheetahs vs Pumas15:00
Sharks vs Griquas17:05
Blue Bulls vs Lions19:10
More Currie Cup fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
ITM Cup
Sunday , August 31
Taranaki 41 - 3 Bay Of PlentyTaranaki vs Bay Of Plenty Report
Auckland 16 - 16 TasmanAuckland vs Tasman Report
More ITM Cup results
Top 14
Saturday , August 30
La Rochelle 37 - 25 ToulouseLa Rochelle vs Toulouse Report
Grenoble 37 - 23 Bordeaux-Begles
Oyonnax 33 - 6 Stade Francais
Castres 30 - 6 BayonneCastres vs Bayonne Report
Racing Metro Paris 17 - 10 ToulonRacing Metro Paris vs Toulon Report
Lyon 24 - 6 Brive
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Griquas 25 - 36 CheetahsGriquas vs Cheetahs Report
Eastern Province Kings 22 - 41 LionsEastern Province Kings vs Lions Report
Blue Bulls 18 - 23 Western ProvinceBlue Bulls vs Western Province Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Counties Manukau 21 - 27 Hawkes BayCounties Manukau vs Hawkes Bay Report
Southland 22 - 33 Otago
North Harbour 16 - 22 WaikatoNorth Harbour vs Waikato Report
More ITM Cup results
Top 14
Friday , August 29
Clermont Auvergne 20 - 21 MontpellierClermont Auvergne vs Montpellier Report
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Pumas 32 - 22 SharksPumas vs Sharks Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Wellington 21 - 27 ManawatuWellington vs Manawatu Report
Thursday , August 28
Canterbury 48 - 3 NorthlandCanterbury vs Northland Report
Wednesday, August 27
Waikato 17 - 46 TaranakiWaikato vs Taranaki Report
Sunday , August 24
Manawatu 7 - 35 AucklandManawatu vs Auckland Report
Bay Of Plenty 27 - 56 TasmanBay Of Plenty vs Tasman Report
More ITM Cup results
Rugby Championship
Saturday , August 23
New Zealand 51 - 20 AustraliaNew Zealand vs Australia Report
Argentina 31 - 33 South AfricaArgentina vs South Africa Report
More Rugby Championship results
Top 14
Brive 6 - 21 Clermont AuvergneBrive vs Clermont Auvergne Report
Bayonne 38 - 12 Oyonnax
More Top 14 results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Bath00
2Exeter00
3Gloucester00
4Harlequins00
5Leicester Tigers00