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London Wasps side to face Saracens

London Wasps Director of Rugby Dai Young has named his side to face Saracens in this Sunday’s Aviva Premiership game.

Haskell returns to the team

Haskell returns to the team

There are five changes from the starting line-up which defeated London Welsh with a bonus point last weekend, in what was a fourth consecutive win for Wasps.

There is a new centre pairing in Chris Bell and Elliot Daly, with Lee Thomas unfortunately missing out with a dead leg, while Andrea Masi, who has been in Italy, national team training for much of this week, is named in the replacements.

Charlie Davies comes in at scrumhalf for the injured Joe Simpson in the other change in the backs, while up front T Rhys Thomas starts at hooker and James Haskell returns, having missed last week with illness, to start in the number seven shirt.

On the bench, Jonah Holmes could make his senior debut for Wasps this season, as the Academy youngster is named as the replacement scrum-half.

Holmes started the season on loan at London Welsh where he was the starting number 9 in their opening Aviva Premiership game against Leicester. He was recalled by Wasps following the retirement of Nic Berry and in being named in the squad for Sunday, he becomes the 55th Premiership player to have played for two different teams in the same season, including Aston Croall, Adam Balding and Peter Stringer last year.

Previous Wasps players to have done so include Andy Gomarsall, Phil Greening, Jeremy Staunton and Paul Sackey, who have all played for Wasps and another Premiership club in the same season.

Young said: “While it’s good to be heading to play Saracens with some momentum behind us, we’re not under any illusions as to how much improvement we will have to make this weekend. They will be missing a few players but to be honest, they have such a good squad that we know the guys coming in will be doing everything they can to stake a claim to the shirt. They are a side who know how to win and we need to step up massively to take anything out of the game.”

London Wasps team to play Saracens
15 Hugo Southwell (c)
14 Tom Varndell
13 Elliot Daly
12 Chris Bell
11 Christian Wade
10 Nick Robinson
9 Charlie Davies
1 Tim Payne
2 T Rhys Thomas
3 Zak Taulafo
4 Joe Launchbury
5 Marco Wentzel
6 Ashley Johnson
7 James Haskell
8 Billy Vunipola
16 Tom Lindsay
17 Phil Swainston
18 Simon McIntyre
19 James Cannon
20 Jonathan Poff
21 Jonah Holmes
22 Tommy Bell
23 Andrea Masi