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Mallinder returns as Wanderers take on Gloucester

Harry Mallinder is set to make his first appearance in Black, Green and Gold in over a year as Northampton Wanderers take on Gloucester United in the Premiership Rugby Shield at Franklin's Gardens tonight (kick-off 7.30pm).

Mallinder's long-awaited return to play – since a knee injury saw the 23-year-old forced to the sidelines after making just six appearances in the 2018/19 campaign – is a timely one for Wanderers, with this the first of a trio of back-to-back matches across the festive period.

Claiming their first win of the season two weeks ago, the Wanderers' coaches have again opted for youth as they tackle the also unbeaten Gloucester tonight - with nine Senior Academy players among the starting line-up. 

Josh Gillespie and Ryan Olowofela join the returning Mallinder in the back three, with World Cup silver medalist Piers Francis linking up with Fraser Strachan inside them in the centres.

Tommy Mathews steps in to marshal the game from fly-half while Nottingham's Alex Crocker partners him in the half-back berths.

Mitch Eadie captains the side from the pack, with JJ Tonks and Tui Uru joining him in the back row. Toby Trinder, Jack Hughes and Karl Garside retain their spots in the front row and Ampthill's Rob Langley partners Devante Onojaife in the engine room to complete the scrum.

Tickets for tonight’s match are available on the gate for just £5 adults and £2 juniors, with entry FREE for 2019/20 Season Ticket Holders. And if you're unable to make it to the Gardens, tonight's game will be streamed live on our YouTube channel thanks to Alpha Live.

Premiership Rugby Shield R2
Monday 16 December, 2019
Franklin's Gardens
Kick-off 7.30pm

15 Harry Mallinder
14 Josh Gillespie
13 Fraser Strachan
12 Piers Francis
11 Ryan Olowofela 
10 Tommy Mathews
9 Alex Crocker* (Nottingham)

1 Toby Trinder
2 Jack Hughes
3 Karl Garside
4 Rob Langley* (Ampthill)
5 Devante Onojaife
6 JJ Tonks
7 Mitch Eadie (capt)
8 Tui Uru

16 Jake Farnworth* (Nottingham)
17 Emmanuel Iyogun
18 Ed Prowse* (Coventry)
19 Andrew Weaver* (Hinckley)
20 Ollie Newman
21 Harry Graham* (Nottingham)
22 Caetano Branco* (Nottingham)
23 Rob Povey* (Birmingham Moseley)

Referees: Joe James
Assistant Referees: Robert Teare & George Richardson

*denotes guest player

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