Alex Coles.
Northampton’s Alex Coles was only on the field for 10 minutes against Wasps before going off with an ankle strain
Venue: Twickenham Stoop Date: Saturday, 22 August Kick-off: 14:00 BST Coverage: Updates on BBC local radio and live scores on the BBC Sport website

Northampton Saints have made 10 changes from the side that lost to Wasps on the Premiership’s resumption for Saturday’s visit to London Irish.

With young lock Alex Coles likely to miss the rest of the season with an ankle injury, Saints will hand a debut to Nick Isiekwe, on loan from Saracens.

South African flanker Shaun Adendorff will also make his Northampton bow.

London Irish also make 10 changes from their defeat to Bath, with Matt Cornish handed a first start for the club.

Tom Homer makes his second debut for Irish, who stand ninth in the Premiership, after rejoining the club from Bath in July.

Saints, sixth in the table and three points behind fourth-placed Wasps in the race for the play-offs, welcome back hooker Mikey Haywood after he missed last weekend’s loss because of the birth of his second child.

London Irish assistant coach Declan Danaher told BBC Sport:

“Our victory against Northampton earlier in the season I thought was one of the best performances we’ve produced at this level in a long time.

“But it’s a completely new equation many months on with both sides coming off the back of a defeat.

“Saints will want to come out and show what they are made of under Chris Boyd and what they have in terms of a response after that defeat by Wasps.

“We also know we have to improve on certain areas from last week and we’ve been working hard on how to address that.”

Northampton Saints head coach Chris Boyd told BBC Radio Northampton:

“We know London Irish are a big side and they play the game hard, they are very direct so they are going to be a handful.

“We just want to right the wrong from Sunday [a 34-21 home defeat to Wasps] and play well.

“The very top of the league usually doesn’t lose to the very bottom of the league but if you are sitting third or fourth and playing ninth or 10th, there’s absolutely very little between those sides.

“In my mind there are eight or more genuine contenders for the top four so it’s going to be pretty interesting.”

London Irish: Homer; Loader, Williams, Brophy Clews, Hassell-Collins; Jackson, Meehan; Dell, Cornish, Hoskins, Nott, De Chaves, Cooke, Cowan (capt), Tuisue.

Replacements: Matu’u, Goodrick-Clarke, Kepu, Donnell, Ioane, Phipps, Atkins, Neal.

Northampton Saints: Furbank; Olowofela, Proctor, Hutchinson, Collins; Grayson, Mitchell; Van Wyk, Haywood, Hill, Moon, Isiekwe, Gibson, Ludlam (capt), Adendorff.

Replacements: Marshall, Hobbs-Awoyemi, Painter, Bean, Uru, James, Bird-Tulloch, Tuala.

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