The new Aviva Premiership season got underway on Friday night as Bath whitewashed newcomers Newcastle Falcons 21-0 and the other 10 teams get their season underway over the weekend.
Last season’s Grand Final winners Leicester Tigers face Worcester in Sunday’s only match whilst London Irish v Saracens, is the pick of the games on Saturday.
London Irish v Saracens
The first game tomorrow afternoon sees London Irish take on Saracens, who topped the table at the end of the league season last season.
They hand a debut to new signing Billy Vunipola who made the switch from London Wasps during the close season whilst Matt Stevens, Owen Farrell and Brad Barritt, all members of the victorious Lions team, are set to play in the season’s curtain raiser.
For London Irish, Tomas O’Leary will captain the side for the first time after recovering from an injury which kept him out for the second half of the season.
2011 Premiership champions Saracens will be looking to get their season off to the best possible start and are best priced at 1/7 with Bet Victor to take the two points away from the Madjeski Stadium. The best price available on a London Irish win is 8/1, which is offered by Sportingbet.
This game kicks off at 2pm tomorrow afternoon and is live on BT Sport 1.
Northampton Saints v Exeter Chiefs
Kicking off at 3pm on Saturday, last season’s play-off final runners-up Northampton host Exeter.
The Saints were defeated 37-17 by Leicester Tigers in the play-off final at Twickenham in May and a host of new signings are set to make their debuts for the club tomorrow.
Wales wing George North, Alex Corbisiero and Sam Dickenson will all get their first taste of action in a Northampton shirt.
Since their promotion to the Premiership in 2010, Exeter have coped well and will once again be involved in the Heineken Cup this year, after finishing sixth in the league last season.
But it’s Northampton who are expected to win at Frankin Gardens and Sportingbet provide the best odds at 2/9. The best price on an Exeter win also comes from Sportingbet who are offering prices of 9/2.
Other matches on Saturday afternoon see Gloucester host Sale Sharks at 3pm, whilst at 4:30pm, London Wasps play Harlequins live on BT Sport 1.
Leicester Tigers v Worcester Warriors
Sunday’s match sees last year’s play-off final winners Leicester host Worcester who will field five new signings on Sunday afternoon.
These are half-backs Ignacio Mieres and Jeremy Su’a, lock Mike Williams and prop Jeremy Becasseau whilst Jonathan Thomas has the added pressure of captaining the Warriors on his first match for the club.
Leicester will be without the services of Toby Flood who was left concussed during a match against Ulster last weekend.
This match is also live on BT Sport 1 from 2pm.
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