Hayden Smith to make second Saracens bow after return from NFL side New York Jets
10:16 26 January 2014
2011 Getty Images
Lock forward Hayden Smith will face Newcastle Falcons today (3pm) in the LV= Cup in his first appearance for Saracens since his return from the NFL American football side New York Jets last year.
The game comes 24 hours after Sarries beat Currie Cup champions Sharks of South Africa 23-15 in a one-off clash at Allianz Park and the Hendon stadium is the stage as the Premiership leaders aim to maintain their unbeaten start in the Anglo-Welsh competition.
Yet Mark McCall has named a completely different starting XV with centre Duncan Taylor on the replacements bench the only player to be named in both squads this weekend.
“We’re really excited because the team that we’ve picked is essentially our LV= Cup team and the team that’s played the last two games,” McCall said.
“They’re tremendously excited about the game, they’ve prepared really well.
“The weather forecast doesn’t sound all that promising but we’ll certainly go out there and get stuck in and hopefully keep the momentum in the club going.
Nils Mordt captains the side from fly-half, and is joined by Ben Spencer in the halves.
Ben Ransom, Nathan Earle and Jack Wilson make up an exciting back three, whilst centre pairing Nick Tompkins and Tim Streather are reunited in the midfield once again in an LV= Cup match.
Saracens: 15. Ben Ransom; 14 Jack Wilson, 13 Tim Streather, 12 Nick Tompkins, 11 Nathan Earle; 10 Nils Mordt (c), 9 Ben Spencer; 1 Rhys Gill, 2 Jared Saunders, 3 James Johnston, 4 Hayden Smith, 5 Eoin Sheriff, 6 Nick de Jaeger, 7 Matt Hankin, 8 Jackson Wray.
Replacements: 16 Scott Spurling, 17 Nick Auterac, 18 Biyi Alo, 19 Tom Jubb, 20 Maro Itoje, 21 Duncan Taylor, 22 Sam Stanley, 23 Charlie Kingsman.