Hala’ufia returns for Newcastle encounter

Chris Hala’ufia returns to the London Irish back row for Sunday’s Aviva Premiership match against Newcastle Falcons at Kingston Park (kick-off 3pm).

John Yapp, David Paice and Leo Halavatau will start in the front row with captain, George Skivington and Ian Gough in the second row. Hala’ufia will play alongside Samoa International Ofisa Treviranus and Blair Cowan, who was recently called into the Scotland training squad for the Autumn Internationals.

Tomás O’Leary and Ian Humphreys are named in the halves with Eamonn Sheridan and Fergus Mulchrone forming the centre partnership. Alex Lewington, Sailosi Tagicakibau and Topsy Ojo make up the back three.

Brian Smith, Exiles Director of Rugby said: “We’ve had a good couple of weeks in Europe and have prepared well this week for a challenging trip to Newcastle. Dean and John Wells have assembled a strong squad and will be very tough in their own back yard. We are looking forward to the contest.”

London Irish team to face Newcastle Falcons:

15. Topsy Ojo*; 14. Alex Lewington; 13.Fergus Mulchrone; 12. Eamonn Sheridan; 11. Sailosi Tagicakibau*; 10. Ian Humphreys; 9. Tomás O’Leary*; 1. John Yapp*; 2. David Paice*; 3. Leo Halavatau; 4. George Skivington (Captain); 5. Ian Gough*; 6. Blair Cowan; 7. Ofisa Treviranus*; 8. Chris Hala’ufia*

Replacements: 16. Mike Mayhew; 17 Matt Parr; 18. Jamie Hagan*; 19.Bryn Evans*; 20. Jebb Sinclair*; 21. Guy Armitage; 22. Shane Geraghty*; 23. Darren Allinson

*Denotes International

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