TEAM NEWS | Bath Rugby v Saracens Men
Aled Davies has warned his team mates that Saracens Men will have to be at their best on Sunday, as they travel to Bath looking to make it back-to-back wins in the Gallagher Premiership.
The scrum-half has started all three matches so far this season, and his Welsh roots mean he has featured in plenty of fiery matches at the Recreation Ground over the years, with another one expected on Sunday.
There are three changes to the starting line-up made by Director of Rugby Mark McCall from the side that beat Newcastle Falcons at StoneX Stadium last weekend.
Maro Itoje returns to the second-row after his Player of the Series impact for the British and Irish Lions in the summer. Nick Tompkins is back at inside centre and Alex Goode makes his first start of the season at full-back.
Mako Vunipola, Jamie George and Marco Riccioni continue in a front-row which functioned very well against the Falcons with Itoje alongside Tim Swinson in the second-row, a partnership which was highly successful in the Championship last season.
Nick Isiekwe, Ben Earl and Billy Vunipola remain at the base of the scrum, just in front of Davies and captain Owen Farrell at nine and 10.
Tompkins’ inclusion means Alex Lozowski moves to outside centre, and in the back-three Max Malins moves to the left wing, with Sean Maitland swapping to the right and Goode operating at full-back.
On the bench there is a welcome return for Vincent Koch after his involvement in both the Lions series and Rugby Championship for South Africa, whilst academy graduates Andy Christie, Sean Reffell and Rotimi Segun will all be eyeing up some game time at The Rec.
Davies says Sarries are looking to build on the win over Newcastle as they prepare for the trip to the West Country.
“We’ve had a mixed start but on the whole we’re reasonably happy and know that there is a lot more in us to get better as a team.” Said the Wales International.
He continued: “Bath have quality throughout their squad and are looking for their first win so we know it will be a tough task. We have huge respect for them and will need to perform at our best to get a positive result.
“Every game in this league is really tough which is what makes it such a great competition and Sunday will be no different.”
Saracens Men team to play Bath Rugby:
1 Mako Vunipola
2 Jamie George
3 Marco Riccioni
4 Maro Itoje
5 Tim Swinson
6 Nick Isiekwe
7 Ben Earl
8 Billy Vunipola
9 Aled Davies
10 Owen Farrell (c)
11 Max Malins
12 Nick Tompkins
13 Alex Lozowski
14 Sean Maitland
15 Alex Goode
16 Tom Woolstencroft
17 Eroni Mawi
18 Vincent Koch
19 Andy Christie
20 Sean Reffell
21 Ivan van Zyl
22 Dom Morris
23 Rotimi Según