Apr 14, 2017
Isiekwe deserves his chance - Peel
18-year-old second-row Nick Isiekwe will make his debut on Sunday afternoon at Stadium:MK as Sarries travel to face Northampton Saints.
Having played in a variety of positions throughout his career, including prop, centre and in the back-row, Isiekwe takes his place at lock these days and this is where he will start on Sunday.
Isiekwe was picked up by Sarries from Old Albanians after a trial when he was 13. While being educated at Haileybury College in Hertfordshire he captained Hertfordshire U16 and Saracens U17.
He has been part of the ‘A’ setup since 2015 and has represented England throughout the youth levels. Isiekwe was a key figure in England’s U20 Six Nations Grand-Slam triumph earlier in 2017.
An influential figure in his development has been former England U20 head-coach and current Saracens coach Ian Peel, who said:
“He’s a physical specimen, he’s a big guy who moves well and is very athletic. Also, his set piece is really good, his line-out is strong, as is his scrummaging.
He added, “Obviously, he was an impressive schoolboy, it’s a different environment to that and it’s taken him a little bit of time to adjust but he’s stepping on now. His performances in the ‘A’ team have been good and he’s doing very well.”
Forwards coach Alex Sanderson also praised Isiekwe’s effort in adjusting to the Saracens first-team setup, explaining:
“He’s worked really hard on his basic skills and his knowledge about how he can fit into our structure and our environment here and in recent months, he’s really come on and matured.
“He is still very young but what he has got in an abundance is athletic ability and talent certainly and hopefully what will be evident will be his enthusiasm on the day to make a statement and carve out a position for himself in the team going forward.”