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Preview: Saracens vs Scarlets

15th November 2013 11:17

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SKY_MOBILE Charlie Hodgson - Saracens Aviva Premiership

Starting for Sarries: Charlie Hodgson

Saracens have named Charlie Hodgson at fly-half in their squad for this Sunday's LV=Cup fixture against the Scarlets.

Hodgson comes into the side that beat London Wasps at Adams Park, with the 33-year-old lining up alongside Ben Spencer in the halves.

In the Saracens midfield 18-year-old Nick Tompkins and 25-year-old Tim Streather make their home debuts for the club and after his last minute heroics against Wasps, James Short comes into the side on the left wing - Kiwi Jack Wilson and Ben Ransom complete the back three.

In the pack, Jared Saunders moves from hooker to loosehead prop, with Jamie George wearing the number 2 shirt. Alastair Hargreaves replaces George Kruis, to partner Mouritz Botha in the second row and Jacques Burger returns at openside flanker, with Matt Hankin chosen at blindside - Jackson Wray retains the number eight shirt to complete the back row.

Saracens coach Alex Sanderson; "Everyone has worked hard this week, the application of the guys has been superb and a few players are looking to continue their good form this weekend against the Scarlets".

On Sunday's opposition he added; "We know that even though their international contingent maybe missing, that they still have the talent to cause us plenty of problems".

More to follow...

Form: Saracens began their LV=Cup campaign with a 24-21 bonus point victory away at London Wasps last Friday. Saracens have lost only once at home in this competition since 2008: 22-23 to Newport Gwent Dragons at Vicarage Road in February 2010. Scarlets are unbeaten in their last five fixtures in all tournaments since Glasgow Warriors beat them, 17-12, at Parc y Scarlets in the PRO12 on 5October. The Welshmen's only defeat in their last four LV=Cup ties was 17-36 at Sale Sharks in round 3 last season. The Scarlets have not won in England in this tournament since a visit to London Irish three years ago. The two sides have met on three previous occasions, all in the Anglo-Welsh Cup, with Scarlets taking the first two: 36-32 at Stradey Park in December 2007, and 26-17 at Vicarage Road in October 2008, whilst Saracens won 34-7 at Parc y Scarlets in January 2011.

The teams:

Saracens: 15 Ben Ransom; 14 Jack Wilson, 13 Tim Streather, 12 Nick Tompkins, 11 James Short; 10 Charlie Hodgson, 9 Ben Spencer; 8 Jackson Wray 7 Jacques Burger, 6 Matt Hankin, 5 Mouritz Botha, 4 Alastair Hargreaves (c), 3 Petrus Du Plessis, 2 Jamie George, 1 Jared Saunders
Replacements: 16 Max Crumpton, 17 Richard Barrington, 18 Matt Stevens, 19 Eoin Sheriff, 20 Hayden Stringer, 21 Neil de Kock, 22 Nils Mordt, 23 Nathan Earle

Scarlets:

Date: Sunday, November 17
Kick-off: 15:00 GMT
Venue: Allianz Park
Referee: Martin Fox (England)
Assistant referees: Robin Goodliffe (England), Nigel Carrick (England)
Timekeeper: Roy Marfleet (England)

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PosTeamPPts
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4Exeter414
5Wasps411