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Saints name side for Academy League opener

Academy head coach Mark Hopley has named his side for Northampton Saints’ first game of the Premiership Rugby Under-18 Academy campaign.

Saints will welcome East Midlands rivals Leicester Tigers to Bedford Athletic Rugby Club (kick-off 1pm) for Saturday’s clash, hoping to recreate the run that saw the side last lift the title back in 2014.

No.8 Manny Iyogun captains the side and Ethan Grayson will look to control proceedings at fly-half, while Morgan Dayes and Tyler Mills are also involved having impressed for Saints in the Premiership Rugby 7s competition back in July.

“We’ve been working extremely hard in training, but games are the best teacher,” said Hopley. “Learning the gameplan, reviewing what went well, learning from mistakes week-to-week is massively important.

“The Leicester-Northampton games are always great spectacles with strong derby traditions. They have a lot of players eligible again after winning the title, so it’s a really tough opener for us.

“We have an exciting young team this season and I’m looking forward to seeing how they develop throughout this year’s competition.”

NORTHAMPTON SAINTS U18s v LEICESTER TIGERS U18s
Premiership Rugby Under-18 Academy League, Round 1
Saturday 22 December, 2018
Bedford Athletic Rugby Club
Kick-off: 1pm

15 Cameron Sharpe
14 Morgan Dayes
13 Tommy Freeman
12 Sol Hyde
11 Louis Martin
10 Ethan Grayson
9 Bradley Crane

1 Ed McDowell
2 Sam Donald
3 Ed Prowse
4 Harry Charter
5 Ed Clayton
6 James Chalk
7 Charles Rylands
8 Emmanuel Iyogun (c)

Replacements:
16 Arun Meta
17 Ollie Frostick
18 Alex King
19 Rory Ward
20 Matt Parry
21 Harry Williams
22 Ollie Betteridge
23 Tyler Mills

Next Home Match

Northampton Saints
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11
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Bordeaux Begles
Friday 11 December - 5:30pm