Tomorrow’s Premiership Rugby Cup clash with Newcastle Falcons will bring the local rugby community to the heart of cinch Stadium at Franklin’s Gardens, as Northampton Saints don the colours of local rugby clubs.
Taking the spirit of the clubs throughout the region with them onto the hallowed turf, the men in Black, Green and Gold will replace their usual match socks with those from 21 clubs across Northamptonshire, Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Buckinghamshire, North Essex and Suffolk – creating an explosion of colour across the Gardens.
The 21 clubs involved will also send two members of their minis or junior section onto the pitch to help form the guard of honour when the sides take to the field.
“After running this scheme during the 2018-19 and 2019-20 seasons, this is the third time we have seen Saints wearing socks from local rugby clubs,” said Head of Community, Connor Fleming.
“The initial idea was to link our professional players to the clubs that were so important in their development. We will once again be connecting as many of the local grassroots clubs as we can to the matchday 23.
“We’re incredibly proud of the relationship Saints have with our local community, and most of the teams involved in the match have also been represented in our matchday festivals throughout the season, from Under-7s all the way up to Under-16s level.”
Each player has been paired with a club from across Saints’ region; you can see which clubs will be represented tomorrow below...
NORTHAMPTON SAINTS vs NEWCASTLE FALCONS
15 George Hendy – Northampton Mens Own RFC
14 Josh Gillespie – Wellingborough RFC
13 Tom Litchfield – Long Buckby RFC
12 Joel Matavesi – Huntingdon RFC
11 Taqele Naiyaravoro – Stewarts & Lloyds RFC
10 James Grayson (c) – Old Northamptonians RFC
9 Jake Garside – Ely Tigers RFC
1 Danny Hobbs-Awoyemi – Northampton Casuals RFC
2 James Fish – Northampton BBOB RFC
3 Ed Prowse – Rushden & Higham RUFC
4 Luke Frost – Cambridge RUFC
5 Tom Lockett – Colchester RFC
6 Duane Willemsen – Brackley RFC
7 JJ Tonks – Bugbrooke RFC
8 Geordie Irvine – Kettering RFC
16 Reece Marshall – Dunstablians RUFC
17 Leroy O'Neil – Ipswich RFC
18 Karl Garside – Olney RFC
19 Callum Burns – Old Northamptonians RFC
20 George Patten – Northampton Casuals RFC
21 Pete White – Towcestrians RFC
22 Ethan Grayson – Old Northamptonians RFC
23 Frankie Sleightholme – Northampton Old Scouts RFC