Belfast Telegraph

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Wasps in search of survival boost

Wasps resume Aviva Premiership action against Saracens on Sunday seeking to put distance between themselves and bottom side Newcastle.

The London club could find themselves in a precarious position if the Falcons, who have installed a new coaching regime led by Gary Gold, embark on a successful run over the coming weeks. A tricky sequence of fixtures awaits Wasps, who face top four contenders Exeter, Sale and London Irish once Saracens depart Adams Park.

Director of rugby Dai Young, however, is refusing to cast his gaze beyond the Premiership champions, and he said: "Tomorrow begins an important period of four league games, but our focus is fully on taking on an extremely dangerous Saracens side."

He added: "Even though they are missing some players, they will come to Adams Park pretty confident.

"They have an excellent squad and I know that players coming in are just as dangerous to the opposition because they want to keep hold of the shirt."

Young has made changes following the break for LV=Cup action, among them the return of fly-half Nicky Robinson, centres Riki Flutey and Dom Waldouck and lock Marco Wentzel.

"I'm pleased we were able to give a number of players a much needed break in the past few weeks and they have come back and put in a really strong week of training," said Young.

Full-back Alex Goode and flanker Andy Saull return for Saracens having been on duty for England Saxons.

Hooker John Smit leads the side in the absence of Steve Borthwick and Ernst Joubert, who have been ruled out through injury.

Prop Rhys Gill is on the bench after featuring in Wales' thrilling 23-21 win in Dublin while rugby league convert Joel Tomkins could make his Premiership debut after being named among the replacements.


From Belfast Telegraph