Newcastle Falcons’ Aviva A League campaign begins in earnest this evening against Sale Jets at Kingston Park, with a strong squad named for the contest by academy head coach James Ponton (kick-off 7pm).
Warren Fury and Joel Hodgson start at scrum-half and fly-half respectively, while James Fitzpatrick and Tane Tu’ipulotu get the nod in the centres.
Exciting prospects Sean Brown and Tom Penny continue on either wing with Simon Hammersley pulling on the No.15 jersey.
Having got some game time under their belts towards the end of Friday’s Aviva Premiership opener with Bath Rugby, Gary Strain, George McGuigan and Scott Wilson all come into the front-row.
Will Witty and Sean Tomes start at second-row with Harrison Collins, Mark Wilson and skipper Chris York making up the back-row.
Rorry Clegg makes a welcome return to action following injury and gets a place on the bench alongside Chris Pilgrim, who will be hoping to put last season’s injury hit campaign behind him.
Newcastle Falcons: 15 Simon Hammersley, 14 Sean Brown, 13 Tane Tu’ipulotu, 12 James Fitzpatrick, 11 Tom Penny, 10 Joel Hodgson, 9 Warren Fury, 1 Gary Strain, 2 George McGuigan, 3 Scott Wilson, 4 Will Witty, 5 Sean Tomes, 6 Harrison Collins, 7 Mark Wilson, 8 Chris York (c)
Replacements: 16 David Nelson, 17 James Hallam, 18 Trevor Davison, 19 Josh Hedley, 20 Ollie Hodgson, 21 Chris Pilgrim, 22 Rory Clegg, 23 Chris Harris
Sale Jets: 15 Rob Miller, 14 Charlie Ingall, 13 Mike Haley, 12 Sam Bedlow, 11 Tom Brady, 10 Danny Cipriani, 9 Nathan Fowles, 1 Aston Croall, 2 Cameron Neild, 3 George Hymes, 4 Tom Holmes, 5 Andrei Ostrikov, 6 Mark Easter, 7 Andy Hughes, 8 Josh Beaumont
Replacements: 16 James Flynn, 17 Joe Jones, 18 Matt Lowes, 19 Ben Gledhill, 20 Jonny Kenny, 21 James Mitchell, 22 Jon O’Donnell, 23 Tim Jeffers