21st Sep, 2018

England star James Haskell set to make Wasps return against rivals Leicester Tigers

RUGBY UNION: JAMES Haskell looks set to make his long-awaited return from injury when Wasps take on Leicester Tigers at the Ricoh Arena this Sunday.

Haskell is set to make his first appearance in black and gold this season following a long term toe injury sustained during England’s summer tour of Australia.

England stat Haskell has been named on the bench along with Simon McIntyre who is likely to make a welcome return after three months sidelined by an ankle injury, picked up against Saracens in October.

There are three changes to the starting 15 that secured a bonus-point win at Newcastle last weekend, with Kurtley Beale, Jimmy Gopperth and Kearnan Myall all set to start. Beale lines up at fullback, with Gopperth named at fly half.

Christian Wade and Josh Bassett will again run out on the wing, while Elliot Daly and Kyle Eastmond continue their partnership in midfield and Dan Robson starts in the nine shirt.

In the pack, Kearnan Myall’s addition sees him link up with Matt Symons in the second row, with the back row of Thomas Young, Guy Thompson and Nathan Hughes unchanged. The front row of Marty Moore, Tommy Taylor and Matt Mullan, who captains the side, is also without change.

“Wasps against Leicester is always a big game and this Sunday is no different,” Wasps director of rugby Dai Young.

“The clubs have enjoyed healthy rivalry over the decades and there is a little bit of added spice now we are also neighbours, both battling it out to finish in the top part of the table come the end of the season.

“We’ve worked hard to get to the top of the table at the turn of the year, but it’s at the end of the season you really want to be up there, rather than halfway through.

“There are still a lot of things we have to improve on and that’s our aim this weekend, to improve our performance and put in a display we’re proud of, against what is always a really tough Tigers side.”

A large crowd of over 26,000 is expected at the Ricoh Arena on Sunday, so fans are encouraged to arrive early to collect their tickets to avoid queues.

The Wasps Nest Fan Village in the Ericsson Exhibition Hall will open at 12.30. For more information visit www.wasps.co.uk.

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