RUGBY UNION: Welsh shuffle their pack ahead of Plymouth test

Mitch Lees drives on for London Welsh. The forward returns to the Exiles side to take on Plymouth today

Mitch Lees drives on for London Welsh. The forward returns to the Exiles side to take on Plymouth today

First published in Rugby

London Welsh make five forward changes for today’s clash with Plymouth Albion at Brickfields (3pm).

Nathan Trevett and Nathan Vella start in the front row, while Ian Nimmo partners Peter Browne behind them.

Mitch Lees moves to blindside flanker to replace Richard Thorpe, who in turn moves to No 8.

The league leaders go into the match – which got the go-ahead following a pitch inspection yesterday – having won their last four games in all competitions, and with a one-point advantage over Rotherham Titans.

When the sides met at the Kassam Stadium in September, the Exiles ran in four tries in a 40-9 victory.

The sides met twice during Welsh’s Championship-winning season of 2011-12 with the Exiles coming out on top on both occasions – a 24-9 win at Brickfields and a 34-23 victory at Old Deer Park.

“Having re-watched our last game against Plymouth, I was very impressed with the amount of problems they caused us with the possession they had,” said London Welsh head coach Justin Burnell.

“I’m very conscious of that and we’re going to Brickfields with our strongest team available.

“We also know how important this match is in this recent batch of four league games for us.

“We’re heading there with all guns blazing, particularly after last week’s physical encounter against Leeds.”

TODAY’S TEAMS

Plymouth Albion: Mugford, Bowen, Howley-Berridge, Stevens, Woods, Cusack, Rowley, Rice, McGregor, Fairbrother, Beukeboom, Oakley, Langley, Matavesi, Stephen. Reps: Evans, Harrison, Morton, Ascroft-Leigh, Warner, Cushion, Elder.

London Welsh: Awcock, Stegmann, May (capt), Parker, Scott, Ross, Cook, Trevett, Vella, Edwards, Nimmo, P Browne, Lees, Kirwan, Thorpe. Reps: Morris, Hepburn, Tideswell, Pienaar, Denbee, Frost, Robinson.

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