Summer signing Balding in for Falcons

No.8 Adam Balding is handed a start against the team he will join in the summer when Newcastle Falcons travel to Sixways to face Warriors on Friday night (kick-off 8pm).

Falcons have made two personnel changes with a reshuffled back row seeing Peter Browne shift to blindside flanker as Brent Wilson reverts to the openside.

The only other change to the team comes in the backs, with Rob Vickerman replacing the injured Charlie Amesbury for the Sixways clash.

A reshuffled back line sees Springbok Gcobani Bobo shift from outside centre to the left wing, with Vickerman filling the vacated No.13 shirt.

Falcons director of rugby, Steve Bates, said: “We’re expecting a tight game, with two competitive forward packs going at each other.

“We have the two top points scorers in the Guinness Premiership going head to head in Jimmy Gopperth and Willie Walker, both will undoubtedly have a big role to play and there’s every chance it could be a close, exciting game.”

Newcastle Falcons team to face Worcester Warriors:

15 Alex Tait
14 Danny Williams
13 Rob Vickerman
12 Tane Tu’ipulotu
11 Gcobani Bobo
10 Jimmy Gopperth
9 Micky Young

1 Jon Golding
2 Rob Vickers
3 Carl Hayman (captain)
4 James Hudson
5 Tim Swinson
6 Peter Browne
7 Brent Wilson
8 Adam Balding

Replacements:

16 Alex Walker
17 Micky Ward
18 Grant Shiells
19 Mark Sorenson
20 Will Welch
21 Hall Charlton
22 Rob Miller
23 Tom Biggs