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Exiles v Newcastle: Teams

By Tony Curtis   Last updated: 21st September 2007   Subscribe to RSS Feed

Exiles v Newcastle: Teams

Geraghty: starting role

Last season: Newcastle 21 London Irish 26; London Irish 38 Newcastle 12.

Player to watch: Steve Jones - The former Border Reivers player only arrived at Kingston Park in the summer but has found himself handed the job of filling in at No 10 in the absence of Jonny Wilkinson and Toby Flood. After only 32 points in 21 appearances for the Scottish side, the pressure will be on Jones to deliver.

Match fact: The Exiles have won six out of their past seven games at the Madjeski Stadium, while the Falcons have not tasted victory on the road since beating Sale on November 17, 2006.

Betting: For the latest Guinness Premiership odds, click here.

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At the Madejski Stadium, Sunday September 23, KO 3pm

London Irish are boosted by the return to fitness of captain Bob Casey and fly-half Shane Geraghty for the visit of Newcastle Falcons to the Madejski Stadium.

Casey missed the season-opening defeat at Harlequins due to a leg injury, but is fit to take his place in the second-row against Newcastle.

Geraghty - who has been rehabilitating a leg injury suffered while training with England back in June - is ready to feature in the starting line-up after being an unused replacement last week.

Casey, Geraghty and Dan Murphy are the three changes to the XV that lost at Twickenham, while Jeremy Staunton switches to inside centre to accommodate Geraghty.

Kieran Roche, Tonga Lea'aetoa and Nils Mordt all drop down to the replacements bench.

Falcons flying high

Newcastle director of rugby John Fletcher is refusing to get carried away after his side opened up their campaign with victory over Sale.

The Falcons overcame the 2006 champions 33-12 at Kingston Park, but Fletcher insists there are still areas for his side to work on.

He told the club's official website: "I expected a win, I thought we would win and we did win, but that's what the players are paid to do so you won't see us singing and dancing about it.

"Naturally a victory brings confidence, and winning is a habit so it's good to get off to a start like that so early in the season.

"It was a good start, not a perfect one, but to get five points from the game puts us in reasonable spirits going in to this weekend.

"Tactically we played much better, but there are still a lot of areas where we can improve so we're not patting ourselves on the back after one win."

Fletcher has been forced to make three changes - with Toby Flood teaming up with the England squad in France, while Mark Mayerhofler and Andy Buist have been ruled out through injury.

Steve Jones has been handed the task of filling Flood's boots, with Tom Dillon and Andy Perry replacing Mayerhofler and Buist respectively.

Newcastle do welcome John Rudd back on to the wing after he was forced to miss the win over Sale with an ankle injury, while South African No 8 Russell Winter is named on the bench.

London Irish: 15 Delon Armitage, 14 Topsy Ojo, 13 Mark Ireland, 12 Jeremy Staunton, 11 Tomas De Vedia, 10 Shane Geraghty, 9. Paul Hodgson; 1 Dan Murphy, 2 David Paice, 3 Faan Rautenbach, 4 Nick Kennedy, 5 Bob Casey (capt), 6 Declan Danaher, 7 Richard Thorpe, 8 Phil Murphy

Replacements: 16 Casey Dunning, 17 Stuart Mackie, 18 Tonga Lea'aetoa, 19 Kieran Roche, 20 Steffon Armitage, 21 Warren Fury, 22 Nils Mordt

Newcastle: 15 Matthew Burke, 14 Tom May, 13 Tom Dillon, 12 Joe Shaw, 11 John Rudd, 10 Steve Jones, 9 James Grindal, 1 Joe McDonnell, 2 Matt Thompson, 3 Micky Ward, 4 Andy Perry, 5 Mark Sorenson, 6 Geoff Parling, 7 Ben Woods, 8 Phil Dowson (capt)

Replacements: 16 Andy Long, 17 David Wilson, 18 Russell Winter, 19 Brent Wilson, 20 Lee Dickson, 21 Adam Dehaty, 22 Ollie Phillips

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Forthcoming Aviva Premiership Fixtures
TimeFixture
Aviva Premiership
Friday 14th November
Aviva Premiership
19:45Gloucester vs Harlequins
19:45Northampton vs Exeter
Saturday 15th November
14:00Sale vs London Irish
17:00Bath vs Newcastle
Sunday 16th November
13:00Leicester vs Saracens
15:15Wasps vs London Welsh
Friday 21st November
19:45Harlequins vs Sale
20:00Newcastle vs Gloucester
Saturday 22nd November
15:00London Irish vs Bath
15:00Exeter vs Wasps
Sunday 23rd November
13:00Saracens vs Northampton
15:15London Welsh vs Leicester
Friday 28th November
19:45Bath vs Harlequins
Saturday 29th November
15:00Leicester vs Wasps
16:30Exeter vs Saracens
Sunday 30th November
13:00London Irish vs Gloucester
14:30London Welsh vs Northampton
15:15Newcastle vs Sale
Saturday 20th December
14:00Sale vs Exeter
15:00Gloucester vs Bath
15:00Northampton vs Leicester
15:00Saracens vs London Welsh
15:00Harlequins vs Newcastle
Sunday 21st December
14:00Wasps vs London Irish
Friday 26th December
15:00London Irish vs London Welsh

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