Six changes for Saints ahead of Toulon clash

Six changes for Saints ahead of Toulon clash

Phil Dowson makes six changes to his Northampton Saints side for Round 2 of the Investec Champions Cup, as RC Toulon head to cinch Stadium at Franklin’s Gardens this Friday (15 December, kick-off: 8pm).

The men in Black, Green and Gold return to Northampton this Friday sitting at the top of Pool 3 after claiming their first Champions Cup victory since 2020 at Glasgow Warriors last week.

But Round 2 sees the arrival of three-time competition winners Toulon to Northampton, their first visit to the East Midlands since 2009 – when Saints ran out 52-11 winners thanks to tries from Mark Easter, Soane Tonga’uiha, Chris Ashton and Stephen Myler.

George Furbank will once again captain Saints from fullback, though he is joined by a new-look wing pairing of George Hendy and Tom Seabrook against Toulon.

Last week’s Player-of-the-Match Tommy Freeman remains at centre for Northampton, while Tom Litchfield comes in to start in Saints’ midfield for the third time this season.

Fin Smith – who claimed his second-highest points haul of the season from the tee in Round 1 – combines with Alex Mitchell in Saints’ half-backs for the fourth time this term.

Props Ethan Waller and Trevor Davison come in to start for Saints this weekend, packing down alongside hooker Curtis Langdon in Northampton’s front row. Meanwhile Temo Mayanavanua makes his first start in Black, Green and Gold against Toulon as he joins Alex Moon in Northampton’s engine room.

Tom Pearson is the only change in Saints’ back row, with the 24-year-old coming in to start at blindside flanker while flanker Courtney Lawes and No.8 Sam Graham retain their spots there.

There is space on Saints’ bench for the likes of Sam Matavesi, Tarek Haffar, Chunya Munga, Tom James and Ollie Sleightholme, who will all be hoping to make an impact from amongst the replacements – while Charlie Savala could make his Club debut if he enters the action on Friday, and No.8 Juarno Augustus makes his return from injury.


Investec Champions Cup, Round 2

Friday 15 December 2023

cinch Stadium at Franklin’s Gardens

Kick-off: 8pm

15 George Furbank (c)

14 Tom Seabrook

13 Tommy Freeman

12 Tom Litchfield

11 George Hendy

10 Fin Smith

9 Alex Mitchell

1 Ethan Waller

2 Curtis Langdon

3 Trevor Davison

4 Temo Mayanavanua

5 Alex Moon

6 Courtney Lawes

7 Tom Pearson

8 Sam Graham


16 Sam Matavesi

17 Tarek Haffar

18 Paul Hill

19 Tom Lockett

20 Juarno Augustus

21 Tom James

22 Charlie Savala – Northampton Saints debut

23 Ollie Sleightholme

Not available for selection:

Matthew Arden, Alex Coles, Will Glister, Rory Hutchinson, Emmanuel Iyogun, Lewis Ludlam, Joel Matavesi, Burger Odendaal, James Ramm and Alex Waller.

Latest News