Howe to start in Sixways sell-out

Tom Howe will make his first Gallagher Premiership appearance of the season against London Irish in a Sixways sell-out on Saturday (kick-off 3.00pm).

Howe scored a hat-trick of tries against Exeter Chiefs in the Premiership Rugby Cup in October and he crossed again in the European Challenge Cup against Dragons two weeks ago to take his Warriors’ career try tally to 21 in 32 appearances.

Howe gets his seasonal Premiership debut because Melani Nanai took a knock to a shoulder in last week’s match against Gloucester at Kingsholm.

The inclusion of Howe is the only change Warriors Director of Rugby Alan Solomons has made to the starting XV.

There are two changes to the bench with Richard Palframan coming into the squad as replacement tighthead prop and Isaac Miller as reserve hooker.

Hooker Matt Moulds, who captained Warriors for the first time at Gloucester, will have the honour of leading out the side for a match that has attracted a full house for the club’s Christmas fixture.

Warriors
15 Chris Pennell
14 Perry Humphreys
13 Ashley Beck
12 Ryan Mills
11 Tom Howe
10 Duncan Weir
9 Francois Hougaard
1 Callum Black
2 Matt Moulds (C)
3 Nick Schonert
4 Anton Bresler
5 Graham Kitchener
6 Ted Hill
7  Sam Lewis
8 Cornell Du Preez

Replacements
16  Isaac Miller
17  Ryan Bower
18 Richard Palframan
19 Michael Fatialofa
20 GJ Van Velze
21 Michael Heaney
22 Jono Lance
23 Jamie Shillcock

London Irish | 15 Alivereti Veitokani, 14 Belgium Tuatagaloa, 13 Curtis Rona, 12 Tom Stephenson, 11 Ollie Hassell-Collins, 10 Stephen Myler, 9 Nick Phipps, 1 Allan Dell, 2 Motu Matu’u, 3 Lovejoy Chawatama, 4 Franco ven der Merwe (C), 5 Adam Coleman, 6 Matt Rogerson, 7 Bair Cowan, 8 Albert Tuisue.

Replacements | 16 Sai Fainga’a, 17 Harry Elrington, 18 Ollie Hoskins, 19 George Nott, 20 Steve Mafi, 21 Ben Meehan, 22 Bryce Campbell, 23 James Stokes.