Northampton Saints have named a strong starting XV for the second ‘Derby Day Double’ clash against Leicester Tigers this weekend.
The men in Black, Green and Gold take to the cinch Stadium at Franklin’s Gardens turf for the final time this season, as they meet their East Midlands rivals on home soil on Saturday (kick-off: 2pm).
Saints have already qualified for the Gallagher Premiership semi-finals (with tickets going on sale next week), so will use this match as an opportunity to give as many first-team players as possible important game-time ahead of the play-offs.
The Club will also bid a fond farewell to its departing players after the full-time whistle, with supporters welcomed onto the pitch for the annual Leavers’ Ceremony – please CLICK HERE for more information.
David Ribbans will lead out Saints as captain on his final appearance at the Gardens. The lock is partnered by Alex Moon in the engine room, with Lukhan Salakaia-Loto, Sam Graham and No.8 Juarno Augustus selected in the back row.
Trevor Davison plays his third match for Northampton at tighthead prop, while loosehead Ethan Waller also earns a start and Sam Matavesi lines up at hooker.
Northampton’s half-back axis of Alex Mitchell and Fin Smith continue in the No.9 and No.10 jerseys for Saints after the pair ran riot in Newcastle last weekend.
Rory Hutchinson plays a familiar role at inside centre for Saints, but Tommy Freeman will play outside him in the midfield for the first time in his Northampton career.
Tom Collins (scorer of a brace of tries last weekend at Falcons), Courtnall Skosan and fullback George Hendy make up the back three to round off the hosts’ starting line-up, but an extended bench will allow Phil Dowson to rotate his squad throughout the contest – with the likes of Mike Haywood, Brandon Nansen, Danny Hobbs-Awoyemi, Callum Burns, Frankie Sleightholme, Ethan Grayson, and Archie Kean also set to make their final appearances in Black, Green and Gold.
NORTHAMPTON SAINTS XV vs LEICESTER TIGERS XV
Saturday 29 April 2023
cinch Stadium at Franklin’s Gardens
15 George Hendy
14 Tom Collins
13 Tommy Freeman
12 Rory Hutchinson
11 Courtnall Skosan
10 Fin Smith
9 Alex Mitchell
1 Ethan Waller
2 Sam Matavesi
3 Trevor Davison
4 David Ribbans (c)
5 Alex Moon
6 Lukhan Salakaia-Loto
7 Sam Graham
8 Juarno Augustus
Callum Burns, Tom Cruse, Mike Haywood, Danny Hobbs-Awoyemi, Oisín Heffernan, Paul Hill, Ed Prowse, Tom Lockett, Brandon Nansen, Alex Coles, Angus Scott-Young, Karl Wilkins, Callum Braley, Tom James, James Grayson, Frankie Sleightholme, Tom Litchfield, Ethan Grayson, Archie Kean, Will Glister (Under-18)
Not considered for selection:
Geordie Irvine, Emmanuel Iyogun, Joel Matavesi, Matt Proctor, James Ramm, Ollie Sleightholme and Robbie Smith.
Referee: Greg Macdonald
Assistant Referees: James Clarke and Peter Allan