London Irish have made three changes to the starting line-up for Saturday’s game against Newcastle Falcons (kick-off 3pm at the Madejski Stadium) with Max Northcote-Green coming in at number 7, Scott Steele making a start at scrum-half and Johnny Williams in the centres.

Mike Coman captains the side again alongside Northcote-Green and Ofisa Treviranus in the back row.

Gordon Reid, Saia Fainga’a and Petrus du Plessis retain their starting spots in the front row while Franco van der Merwe and Teofilo Paulo continue their partnership in the second row.

Scott Steele joins James Marshall at scrum-half and fly-half respectively, and London Irish Academy graduates Johnny Williams and Tom Fowlie pair up in the centres.

The back three of Alex Lewington, nominated for the Citizen Try of the Week after his moment of magic last Friday, Joe Cokanasiga and Greig Tonks remains the same.

At the midway point in the Aviva Premiership season, London Irish director of rugby, Nick Kennedy, is looking for his players to show heart, soul and passion in front of the Madejski Stadium home crowd on Saturday. 

“This game marks the midway point of the season and with 11 rounds to go, there are 55 points still available,” said London Irish director of rugby Nick Kennedy. 

“The team were back in training on Boxing Day and we’ve had a good week looking forward to the game against Newcastle Falcons on Saturday.

“Our supporters have been fantastic, especially over the last few months, and we will be going all out to win in front of them at the Madejski with the heart, soul and passion which makes our club so special."

London Irish: 15 Greig Tonks, 14 Joe Cokanasiga, 13 Tom Fowlie, 12 Johnny Williams, 11 Alex Lewington, 10 James Marshall, 9 Scott Steele, 1 Gordon Reid, 2 Saia Fainga’a, 3 Petrus du Plessis, 4 Franco van der Merwe, 5 Teofilo Paulo, 6 Mike Coman (c), 7 Max Northcote-Green, 8 Ofisa Treviranus 

Replacements: 16 Tom Woolstencroft, 17 Ben Franks, 18 Ollie Hoskins, 19 Sebastian De Chaves, 20 Blair Cowan, 21 Ben Meehan, 22 Theo Brophy Clews, 23 Aseli Tikoirotuma

The game will see London Irish's biggest crowd of the season so far with over 9,000 people set to be at the Madejski Stadium on Saturday.

Tickets start from £3 for under 13s and £23 for adults. Tickets are available from or by calling 0118 968 1016 (Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm and Saturday 9am to noon).


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