December 8 2013 Latest news:
Friday, September 27, 2013
Conor O’Shea readily accepts that Saracens have made an “exceptional” start to the new Aviva Premiership season.
The 2011 Premiership champions will arrive at the Twickenham Stoop on Saturday for an appointment with Harlequins after reeling off successive bonus point victories against London Irish, Gloucester and Bath.
No club in Premiership history has launched a league campaign by claiming four successive points maximums, and Quins know they face an intense examination.
“Saracens have been exceptional,” Quins rugby director O’Shea said.
“They have a massive, powerful pack and strength in depth. Now, they want to give their players freedom to play as well.
“But we are a good side, we’re at home and are in a decent place ourselves. It’s all about finishing in the top four at the end of the season.”
Quins winger Tom Williams will make his 200th competitive appearance for the club as he starts in an unchanged starting side from last week’s victory over Worcester Warriors.
Nick Easter continues in the second row with George Robson. Captain Chris Robshaw leads the team from openside flanker and is joined in the back row with Maurie Fa’asavalu and Tom Guest.
In the backs, Tom Casson continues his centre partnership with George Lowe, while Danny Care and Nick Evans are named at half backs.
The one change to last week’s squad is in the replacements as Matt Hopper is named in place of Sam Smith.
Jordan Turner-Hall saw a specialist and required surgery on a hip injury last Saturday. The centre is expected to be out until the New Year and joins Joe Gray, Paul Doran Jones, Charlie Matthews, Nick Kennedy, Sam Twomey, Ross Chisholm, Ollie Lindsay-Hague, Sam Stuart and Harry Sloan on the list of those who are unavailable for selection due to injury.
Harlequins: 15. Mike Brown, 14. Tom Williams, 13. George Lowe, 12. Tom Casson, 11. Ugo Monye, 10. Nick Evans, 9. Danny Care; 1. Joe Marler, 2. Rob Buchanan, 3. Will Collier, 4. Nick Easter, 5. George Robson, 6. Maurie Fa’asavalu, 7. Chris Robshaw (C), 8. Tom Guest
Replacements: 16. Dave Ward, 17. Mark Lambert, 18. Kyle Sinckler, 19. George Merrick, 20. Luke Wallace, 21. Karl Dickson, 22. Ben Botica, 23. Matt Hopper
Saracens: 1. M. Vunipola, 2. Brits, 3. Stevens, 4. Borthwick ©, 5. Kruis, 6. Brown, 7. Burger, 8. B. Vunipola; 9. Wigglesworth, 10. Farrell; 11. Strettle, 12. Taylor, 13. Wyles, 14. Ashton; 15. Goode
Replacements: 16. George, 17. Auterac, 19. Johnston, 19.Hargreaves, 20. Wray, 21. De Kock, 22. Tagicakibau, 23. Wilson