LV= Cup teams packed with youthful talent

With the international window now just about underway, the LV=Cup kicks off again this weekend, and as expected, plenty of young players will be given a chance to play.

Perhaps none more so than Harlequins and Bath, who play each other live on Sky Sports on Saturday afternoon.

Harlequins include double JWC winner Harry Sloan at inside centre, as well as the previous two JWC winning number 8, Jack Clifford who captained England U20 to victory in 2013 starts at openside, and James Chisholm, who played number 8 in last year’s victorious U20 side starts in the same position tomorrow.

On the bench are a number of school leavers, including Wellington College leaver Seb Adeniran-Olule, ex John Fisher man Kieran Treadwell, and last year’s Whitgift star, Henry Cheeseman.

Quins have plenty of experience in their side though, while Bath have named an incredibly youthful side, including a whole host of U20s.

Their backline includes yesterday’s England U20 call ups Will Homer and Rory Jennings, as well as the already selected Max Clark, who played for Bryanston School with Jennings last year.

Their school 1st XV captain the year before was Charlie Ewels, he starts in the second row, with 2013 JWC winner David Sisi at 8.

On the bench Ewels’ Bryanson teammate Tom Woolstencroft covers hooker, with double NatWest Cup winning prop with Dulwich College, Beno Obano. Millfield leaver Tom Ellis is also on the bench, as is a man who left the school a year earlier, Max Northcote-Green, while St Joseph’s College leaver George Wacokecoke is also on the bench.

They are far from the only two sides opting for youth though, Gloucester play the Ospreys and include several youngsters, including most notably the current Cheltenham College pupil, Ollie Thorley, on the wing. He is supported by 2014 JWC winners Callum Braley and Billy Burns at half back as well as Henry Purdy at outside half.

In the back second row Elliot Stooke and number 8 Ross Moriarty have also picked up JWC titles, as have Joe Batley and Lewis Ludlow on the bench, while Kai Little was a part of England U18s successful FIRA/AER European Championship win last year.

Leicester Tigers v Northampton Saints is always a monumental clash, but both have felt able to give plenty of youngsters a run. Leicester’s George Catchpole and Harry Thacker will be familiar names to followers of youth rugby, as will Charlie Beckett on the bench.

Saints have mixed things up quite subtly, Tom Stephenson at centre and Howard Packman on the wing were both a part of England U20s JWC title last year, as were Jordan Onojaife and Sam Olver on the bench, while Rory Hutchinson is part of the Scotland U20 set up.

London Irish have gone for experience against the Scarlets, though last year’s England U18 fly half and Abingdon leaver Theo Brophy-Clews is on the bench. Wasps to are fairly experienced for their game against Cardiff blues, but the likes of Piers O’Connor, recent Shiplake leaver Tom Howe, and Hampton old boy Alex Lundberg add a real sense of youth.

London Welsh opt for real experience v Saracens, as their centre selection of Tom May and Olly Barkley shows, however Saracens are really opting for youth as their resources are stretched with international representation and their game against the Blue Bulls.

Max Wilkins starts at outside centre with Geroge Perkins on the wing, while a pair of JWC winners last year in Biyi Alo and Hayden Thompson-Stringer are in the pack.

On the bench the likes of Max Malins and Millfield School leaver Tom Whiteley add even more exciting youth to the Saracens ranks.

Exeter opt for a reasonably experienced starting XV against Newport Gwent Dragons, but include the likes of Joel Conlon, Jack Stanley, and Stuart Townsend on the bench, which ought to add some real excitement.

The final game of the weekend is Newcastle Falcons v Sale Sharks. Newcaslte have named a very experienced line up, hwoever Sale have opted for the opposite tactic as shown by the selection of a pair of last year’s England U18 starts, George Nott, and St Ambrose College old boy Ciaran Parker.

As ever, the LV=Cup ought to offer a great chance to see a few of tomorrow’s stars in action!

LV=Cup Fixtures:

Harlequins v Bath

Gloucester v Ospreys

Leicester Tigers v Northampton Saints

Scarlets v London Irish

Wasps v Cardiff Blues

London Welsh v Saracens

Newport Gwent Dragons v Exeter Chiefs

Newcastle Falcons v Sale Sharks



15. Ross Chisholm  14. Tom Williams  13. Tom Casson  12. Harry Sloan  11. Charlie Walker  10. Nick Evans  9. Karl Dickson  1. Darryl Marfo  2. Rob Buchanan  3. Mark Lambert (c)  4. George Merrick  5. Sam Twomey  6. Joe Trayfoot  7. Jack Clifford  8. James Chisholm.

Replacements: 16. Joe Gray  17. Seb Adeniran-Olule  18. Matt Shields  19. Kieran Treadwell  20. Henry Cheeseman  21. Jordan Burns  22. Ben Botica  23. Ollie Lindsay-Hague.


15 Horacio Agulla  14 Olly Woodburn  13 Max Clark  12 Matt Banahan  11 Richard Lane  10 Rory Jennings  9 Will Homer  1 Nick Auterac  2 Tom Dunn  3 Kane Palma-Newport  4 Dom Day  5 Charlie Ewels  6 Alafoti Fa’osiliva
 7 Guy Mercer (c) 
8 David Sisi.


16 Tom Woolstencroft 
17 Beno Obano
 18 Max Lahiff
 19 Tom Ellis
 20 Max Northcote-Green
 21 Micky Young
 22 Peter Stringer
 23 George Wacokecoke.


Aled Thomas (c);  Steph Reynolds,  Henry Purdy,  Bill Meakes,  Ollie Thorley;  Billy Burns,  Callum Braley;  Dan Murphy,  Darren Dawidiuk,  Sila Puafisi;  Elliott Stooke,  Tom Hicks;  Dan Thomas,  Jacob Rowan,  Ross Moriarty.

Replacements:  Aleki Lutui,  Yann Thomas,  Shaun Knight,  Joe Batley,  Lewis Ludlow,  Dan Robson, Elliott Creed,  Kai Little.


15 Richard Fussell  14 Tom Grabham  13 Jonathan Spratt (c)  12 Ben John  11 Dafydd Howells  10 Sam Davies  9 Tom Habberfield  1 Gareth Thomas  2 Scott Otten  3 Daniel Suter  4 Rynier Bernardo  5 Tevita Cavubati  6 Olly Cracknell  7 Ieuan Jones  8 Morgan Allen.

Replacements:  16 Matthew Dwyer  17 Tom Sloane  18 Cai Griffiths  19 Rhodri Hughes  20 Ifereimi Boladau  21 Martin Roberts  22 Joe Thomas  23 Aisea Natoga.

Leicester Tigers:

15 Tommy Bell  14 Niall Morris  13 George Catchpole  12 Jack Roberts  11 Adam Thompstone  10 Owen Williams  9 Sam Harrison (c)  1 Michele Rizzo  2 Harry Thacker  3 Fraser Balmain  4 Greg Peterson  5 Sebastian De Chaves  6 Jamie Gibson  7 Robert Barbieri  8 Laurence Pearce.

Replacements:  16 Neil Briggs  17 Riccardo Brugnara  18 Logovi’i Mulipola  19 Jack Whetton  20 Charlie Beckett  21 David Mele  22 Matt Smith  23 Terrence Hepetema.

Northampton Saints:

15 Tom Collins  14 Jamie Elliot  13 Dom Waldouck  12 Tom Stephenson  11 Howard Packman  10 Will Hooley  9 Joel Hodgson  1 Ethan Waller  2 Matti Williams  3 Gareth Denman  4 Tom Ryder  5 Alex Woolford  6 Phil Dowson (c)  7 Teimana Harrison 8 Cam Dolan.

Replacements: 16 Reece Marshall  17 Danny Hobbs-Awoyemi  18 Adam Parkins  19 Jordan Onojaife  20 Ben Nytley  21 Alex Day  22 Sam Olver  23 Rory Huthcinson.


15 Josh Lewis,  14 Harry Robinson,  13 Frazier Climo,  12 Adam Warren,  11 Kristian Phillips,  10 Steven Shingler,  9 Rhodri Williams,  1 Phil John,  2 Ken Owens (c),   3 Peter Edwards,   4 George Earle,   5 Lewis Rawlins,   6 Phil Day,   7 Will Boyde,   8 Rory Pitman.

Replacements:  Darran Harris,  Wyn Jones,  Jacobie Adriaanse,  Jack Payne,  Sion Bennett,  Kieran Hardy,  Dan Jones,  Kyle Evans.

London Irish:

15. Tom Homer;  14. James Short;  13. Tom Fowlie;  12. Eoin Griffin;  11. Andrew Fenby;  10. Myles Dorrian;  9. Darren Allinson;  1. Johnny Harris;  2. Jimmy Stevens;  3. Leo Halavatau;  4. Nic Rouse (c); 5. Sean Cox;  6. Kieran Low;  7. Conor Gilsenan;  8. Dan Leo.

Replacements: 16. Mike Mayhew;  17. Halani Aulika;  18. Richard Palframan;  19. David Lyons;  20. Ollie Curry;  21. Tomás O’Leary;  22. Theo Brophy-Clewes;  23. Eamonn Sheridan.


15. Alex Lozowski
 14. Will Helu
 13. Andrea Masi 
12. Sailosi Tagicakibau 
11. Josh Bassett 
10. Glyn Hughes
 9. Charlie Davies
 1. John Yapp
 2. Tom Lindsay
 3. Phil Swainston
 4. Will Rowlands
 5. James Cannon
 6. Ed Jackson (c)
 7. Thomas Young
 8. Guy Thompson.

Replacements:16. Edd Shervington
 17. Alex Lundberg
 18. Will Taylor
 19. Buster Lawrence
 20. Oskar Hirskyj-Douglas
 21. James Small-Edwards
 22. Tom Howe
 23. Piers O’Conor.

Cardiff Blues:

15 Joaquin Tuculet,  14 Richard Smith,  13 Garyn Smith,  12 Adam Thomas,  11 Lucas Amorosino,  10 Rhys Patchell,  9 Lewis Jones;  1 Thomas Davies,  2 Rhys Williams,  3 Craig Mitchell,  4 Miles Normandale,  5 Seb Davies,  6 Macauley Cook,  7 Ellis Jenkins (c),  8 James Sheekey.

Replacements:  16 Liam Belcher,  17 Brad Thyer,  18 Dillon Lewis,  19 Ben Roach,  20 Jordan Viggers,  21 Tomos Williams,  22 Simon Humberstone,  23 Geraint Walsh.

London Welsh:

15. Elliot Kear,  14. Alan Awcock,  13. Tom May (c),  12. Olly Barkley  11. Nick Scott,  10. Tristan Roberts,  9. Rob Lewis,  1. Nathan Trevett,  2. Koree Britton,  3. Taione Vea,  4. Ben West,  5. James Down,  6. Ben Pienaar,  7. Carl Kirwan,  8. Opeti Fonua.

Replacements: 16. Nathan Morris,  17. Eddie Aholelei,  18. Ben Cooper,  19. Dean Schofield,  20. Richard Thorpe,  21. Alex Davies,  22. Will Robinson,  23. James Lewis.


15. Catalin Fercu;  14. Mike Ellery,  13. Max Wilkins,  12. Threttom Palamo,  11. George Perkins;  10. Nils Mordt (c),  9. Ben Spencer;  1. Jack Culverhouse,  2. Jared Saunders,  3. Biyi Alo,  4. Kennett O’Neil,  5. Jack Tredrea,  6. Hayden Thompson-Stringer,  7. Matt Hankin,  8. Nick de Jager.

Replacements: 16. Josh Taylor,  17. Ralph Adams-Hale,  18. Ben Featherstone,  19. Hamish Hamilton,  20. James Stockdale,  21. Tom Whiteley,  22. Henry Staff,  23. Max Malins.

Newport Gwent Dragons:

Geraint Rhys Jones,  Tom Prydie,  Carl Meyer,  Ashley Smith (c),  Ashton Hewitt,  Dorian Jones,  Richie Rees;  Lloyd Fairbrother,  Hugh Gustafson,  Dan Way,  Matthew Screech,  Cory Hill,  Nick Crosswell,  James Benjamin,  Andy Powell.

Replacements:  Rhys Buckley,  Owen Evans,  David Young,  Joe Davies,  Scott Matthews,  Luc Jones,  Angus O’Brien,  Jack Dixon.

Exeter Chiefs:

15 Byron McGuigan  14 Fetu’u Vainikolo  13 Ian Whitten  12 Adam Hughes  11 Tom James  10 Ceri Sweeney (c)  9 Haydn Thomas  1 Brett Sturgess  2 Elvis Taione  3 Tomas Francis  4 Jerry Sexton  5 Will Carrick-Smith  6 Tom Johnson  7 Sam Simmonds  8 Sam Skinner.

Replacements: 16 Greg Bateman  17 Jake Woolmore  18 Jack Stanley  19 Ed Holmes  20 Joel Conlon  21 Stuart Townsend  22 Laurence May  23 Max Bodilly.

Newcastle Falcons:

15 Alex Tait,  14 Lee Smith,  13 Jamie Helleur,  12 Anitelea Tuilagi,  11 Danny Barnes,  10 Rory Clegg,  9 Ruki Tipuna;  1 Eric Fry,  2 Rob Hawkins,  3 Alex Rogers,  4 Josh Furno,  5 Scott MacLeod,  6 Richard Mayhew,  7 Andy Saull (c),  8 Uili Kolo’ofai.

Replacements: 16 Scott Lawson,  17 Rob Vickers,  18 Mark Irving,  19 Sean Robinson,  20 Ally Hogg,  21 Mike Blair,  22 Phil Godman,  23 Simon Hammersley.

Sale Sharks:

Luke McLean,  Tom Brady,  Andy Forsyth,  Sam Bedlow,  Phil Mackenzie,  Joe Ford,  Nathan Fowles,  Alberto de Marchi,  Tommy Taylor,  Ciaran Parker,  Andrei Ostrikov,  George Nott,  Mark Easter,  TJ Ioane,  Viliami Fihaki.

Replacements: Shalva Mamukashvili,  Maxim Cobilas,  James Flynn,  Nathan Hines,  Andy Hughes,  Will Cliff,  Nick Macleod,  Sam James.

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