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Harlequins v Wasps - Aviva Premiership match preview
Harlequins have recalled a number of first-choice players for their Aviva Premiership clash with Wasps at Twickenham Stoop on Saturday.
Joe Gray, George Robson, Ugo Monye, George Lowe, Jordan Turner-Hall and Rob Buchanan all return to the side following international duty with the England Saxons
After missing the recent LV= Cup double-header, winger Tom Williams, fly-half Nick Evans and captain Nick Easter all return for the league clash.
The defending champions currently sit two points clear at the top of the table and are on a 12-match winning streak in all competitions going back to November.
Wasps have named Billy Vunipola in the starting line-up at No 8 after he was released back from the England squad.
The visitors have also made a host of changes following their LV= Cup defeat to Sale, with their ranks boosted by England Saxons returnees.
Joe Simpson and Nick Robinson are named in the halves, while the back-three of Tom Varndell, Christian Wade and skipper Hugo Southwell is re-united.
They were also forced into a late change on the bench with Matt Everard taking over from Tinus DuPlessis.
Harlequins: 15 Ross Chisholm, 14 Tom Williams, 13 George Lowe, 12 Matt Hopper, 11 Ugo Monye, 10 Nick Evans, 9 Karl Dickson, 8 Nick Easter (c), 7 Luke Wallace, 6 Tom Guest, 5 George Robson, 4 Charlie Matthews, 3 James Johnston, 2 Joe Gray, 1 Mark Lambert.
Replacements: 16 Rob Buchanan, 17 Darryl Marfo, 18 Will Collier, 19 Sam Twomey, 20 Maurie Fa'asavalu, 21 Ollie Lindsay-Hague, 22 Rory Clegg, 23 Jordan Turner-Hall.
Wasps: 15 Hugo Southwell (c), 14 Christian Wade, 13 Elliot Daly, 12 Chris Bell, 11 Tom Varndell, 10 Nick Robinson, 9 Joe Simpson, 8 Billy Vunipola, 7 Sam Jones, 6 Ashley Johnson, 5 Marco Wentzel, 4 James Cannon, 3 Phil Swainston, 2 T Rhys Thomas, 1 Zak Taulafo.
Replacements: 16 Tom Lindsay, 17 Tim Payne, 18 Will Taylor, 19 Alex Rae, 20 Matt Everard, 21 Charlie Davies, 22 Stephen Jones, 23 Charlie Hayter.
What they said...
Wasps director of rugby Dai Young
"There has been a good atmosphere around the place this week in leading up to the first Aviva Premiership game in over a month.
"Harlequins are a side who tend to negotiate the international periods very well so we know how tough a task we will have on Saturday night.
"They showed us how quickly they can change a game on the opening day of the season and we will have to be at our best to get a result this weekend."
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|Sunday 28th December|
|14:30||Gloucester vs Wasps|
|Friday 2nd January|
|19:45||Northampton vs Newcastle Falcons|
|Saturday 3rd January|
|14:00||Saracens vs London Irish|
|16:30||Exeter vs Gloucester|
|Sunday 4th January|
|14:00||Wasps vs Sale|
|14:00||Leicester Tigers vs Bath|
|14:30||London Welsh vs Harlequins|
|Friday 9th January|
|19:45||Gloucester vs Saracens|
|Saturday 10th January|
|14:00||Sale vs Northampton|
|15:00||Bath vs Wasps|
|15:15||Harlequins vs Leicester Tigers|
|Sunday 11th January|
|14:00||Newcastle Falcons vs London Welsh|
|15:00||London Irish vs Exeter|
|Saturday 14th February|
|15:00||Leicester vs Gloucester|
|15:00||Exeter vs Newcastle|
|15:00||Northampton vs London Irish|
|Sunday 15th February|
|14:00||Wasps vs Harlequins|
|14:30||London Welsh vs Sale|
|15:00||Saracens vs Bath|
|Friday 20th February|
|20:00||Newcastle vs Wasps|
|Saturday 21st February|
|14:00||Sale vs Saracens|
|15:00||Harlequins vs Exeter|
|15:00||London Irish vs Leicester|
|15:00||Bath vs Northampton|
|15:00||Gloucester vs London Welsh|
Read the thoughts and opinions of Phil Edwards with skysports.com