Saracens - Saracens name team to face Bristol

Apr 28, 2017

Saracens name team to face Bristol


Saracens have named their team to face Bristol in round 21 of the Aviva Premiership on Saturday at Allianz Park, kick-off 15h00.

It will be an emotional day at Allianz Park, as club legends Neil de Kock and Kelly Brown make their final appearances of their careers in the final home game of the regular season. It is also a day of milestones on Saturday with hooker Schalk Brits making his 200th appearance for the club he has served with distinction since his arrival in 2009. Owen Farrell will skipper the side in what will be the England fly-half’s 150th appearance for the club.

Up front, Schalk Brits will bring up his double-century of appearances alongside Mako Vunipola and Vincent Koch in the front-row. Maro Itoje will start alongside George Kruis at lock, whilst in the back-row, in his final game for the club Kelly Brown will start at blindside flanker with Schalk Burger (openside flanker) and Billy Vunipola (No8) packing down alongside the Saracens stalwart in the back row.

In the halves, Neil de Kock will bring down the curtain on a legendary 11-year career with Saracens making his 263rd appearance for the Men in Black. The former club captain will partner skipper on the day, Owen Farrell.

At centre, Brad Barritt misses out with a knock, so Alex Lozowski comes into the midfield to wear the number twelve jersey, he partners Nick Tompkins at centre.

In the back-three, after his try scoring return from the bench against Munster, Chris Wyles comes into the side on the left-wing joining Chris Ashton (right-wing) and Alex Goode at full-back.

On Saturday’s game, director of rugby Mark McCall paid tribute to some of the club’s departing stars: “Both Kelly Brown and Neil de Kock will go down as legends of this club,” hailed McCall. “Kelly (Brown) has been an amazing player and person for Saracens. On the field, he has been unbelievably consistent setting a superb example to our younger players, constantly giving everything he had. Off the field, he is one of the most selfless people you’ll ever meet, always putting the team first - his decency and humility have always shone through in his time here. Neil (de Kock) will always be remembered as one of the true greats of Saracens. His contribution to this club over 11-years really is hard to put into words - he will rightly be remembered as a Saracens legend and hopefully on Saturday afternoon we can give him and Kelly the send-off they so richly deserve.”

Saturday could also potentially see fan favourites Chris Ashton, Petrus Du Plessis and Jim Hamilton play their final games at Allianz Park, with Saracens still sitting in an away semi-final position in the Aviva Premiership standings.

McCall added: “Petrus (Du Plessis) has been a rock for this club ever since he arrived in 2010 and his efforts on and off the pitch have played an important role in helping the club get to where we are now – consistently competing for the highest honours in the game.  Jim’s (Hamilton) contribution to the group has been extremely important - time and again he has really stood up for us and has been selfless in his work and approach around the club - he’s enjoyed a fine career at the very top of his profession.  We understand Chris’ (Ashton) motivations to head to France and since the announcement earlier this season his attitude and performances have been first-class. He, like a few other players heading elsewhere at the end of the season, will still have a key role to play over the next few weeks.”

Saracens team to face Bristol

15 Alex Goode (227)

14 Chris Ashton (115)

13 Nick Tompkins (57)

12 Alex Lozowski (28)

11 Chris Wyles (223)

10 Owen Farrell (c) (149)

9 Neil De Kock (262)

1 Mako Vunipola (117)

2 Schalk Brits (199)

3 Vincent Koch (12)

4 Maro Itoje (72)

5 George Kruis (133)

6 Kelly Brown (154)

7 Schalk Burger (22)

8 Billy Vunipola (75)

Replacements

16 Jamie George (169)

17 Titi Lamositele (43)

18 Petrus Du Plessis (155)

19 Jim Hamilton (72)

20 Ben Earl (3)*

21 Richard Wigglesworth (183)

22 Matt Gallagher (12)

23 Mike Ellery (38)

*Ben Earl is set for his Aviva Premiership debut

Don’t miss out on thanking some of Saracens finest players for their tremendous service to the Club on Saturday when the Men in Black face Bristol in the final regular home game of the season at Allianz Park. A limited amount of tickets are still available from saracens.com/tickets. - See more at: http://www.saracens.com/news-article/saracens-to-bid-farewell-to-legendary-pair-against-bristol#sthash.83VTbtdv.dpuf
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