Luke Fielden returns to the wing for Friday’s top of the table clash with Nottingham at Kingston Park, as Newcastle Falcons aim to make it nine wins out of nine in the RFU Championship.
he Falcons flyer, who has notched up four tries this campaign, replaces the injured Tom Catterick after five games out.
A try scorer in last week’s crucial 29-20 triumph over Bedford Blues, Catterick misses out through a knee injury.
Falcons boss Dean Richards has made one other change with hard-hitting centre Jamie Helleur getting the nod ahead of Alex Crockett.
Richards sticks with the same forward-line for the second week running with Will Welch (back), Carlo del Fava (hand) and James Hudson (hand) all still on the injury list.
New signing James Goode is amongst the replacements for the top versus second Friday night duel.
“Nottingham will be a tough examination for the lads, and we will certainly have to be at our very best to continue our winning run,” said Richards.
He added: “We’ve made a solid start to the season, but the pressure is starting to mount on the players to continue this run.
“We always knew that Bedford would be our toughest challenge of the season so far, and that proved to be the case last weekend.
“This week will be another big challenge for the lads to front up to.”
Friday night sees the return of former Falcons favourite Brent Wilson to Kingston Park, who skippers his new-look Nottingham outfit.
Admitting that he will have mixed emotions on being re-united with some familiar faces in the North East, Wilson told the Falcons official website: “It will be a strange experience for me to be getting changed in the away dressing room.
“I had some good times with the Falcons and I am very much looking forward to catching up with some old faces before and after the game”
Wilson was on the score sheet twice in the Green and Whites’ 63-7 demolition of Bristol last weekend to overtake Bedford into second place.
Now eight points adrift of their North East counterparts, Wilson is looking forward to leading his charges into battle.
“Things are going very well for the club, and we have had a good run of results of late,” said Kiwi Wilson.
He added: “The club is certainly going places and at the start of the season we targeted a play-off spot come the end of the campaign, so we are currently on course.”
Tickets are still available for the game by calling the Falcons Ticket Hotline on 0871 226 6060 or click here to purchase online.
Newcastle Falcons: 15 Alex Tait, 14 Luke Fielden, 13 Tane Tu’ipulotu, 12 Jamie Helleur, 11 Ryan Shortland, 10 Jimmy Gopperth, 9 Rory Lawson, 1 Jonny Golding, 2 Rob Vickers, 3 Oliver Tomaszczyk, 4 Sean Tomes, 5 Scott MacLeod, 6 Mark Wilson, 7 Richard Mayhew, 8 Ally Hogg (c)
Replacements: 16 Matt Thompson, 17 James Hall, 18 James Goode, 19 Chris York, 20 Warren Fury, 21 Joel Hodgson, 22 Alex Crockett