Saracens v Worcester - Aviva Premiership match preview

Last updated: 14th April 2013  

Worcester v Bizkaia Gernika Danny Gray

Danny Gray: Rare start at fly-half for Worcester

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Jacques Burger: Long-awaited return to the Saracens line-up

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Saracens prop Rhys Gill will make his 100th club appearance when the league leaders host Worcester at Allianz Park on Sunday afternoon.

Gill returns to the starting line-up for the Aviva Premiership clash against the Warriors and he will become the newest member of the 100 Club.

Sunday also marks the long-awaited return of flanker Jacques Burger, who has battled back from a knee injury to take his place in the back row for the first time since December 2011.

In other team news, Charlie Hodgson, John Smit, George Kruis, Mouritz Botha and Jackson Wray all come into the starting line-up with Owen Farrell, Schalk Brits, Steve Borthwick, Alistair Hargreaves and Ernst Joubert all rested on rotation.

Chris Wyles and Alex Goode switch places in the starting XV and the replacement's bench as do Neil de Kock and Richard Wigglesworth. Kelly Brown captains the side.

Murray misses out

For Worcester, Danny Gray will make his second Aviva Premiership start of the season. The fly-half, who kicked nine points against Bath on his last start for the club in February, is one of two changes to the side which lost out to Exeter Chiefs two weekends ago.

Tighthead prop John Andress also comes into the side in place of Euan Murray, who misses the game due to religious reasons.

Warriors defeated Saracens 12-3 when the two sides met in the corresponding Aviva Premiership fixture at Sixways last November.

Prop Rob O'Donnell, flanker Jake Abbott and scrum-half Paul Hodgson are recalled to the bench for Sunday's match as Warriors go in search of their first away win of the season.

Saracens: 15 Chris Wyles, 14 Chris Ashton, 13 Joel Tomkins, 12 Brad Barritt, 11 David Strettle, 10 Charlie Hodgson, 9 Neil De Kock, 8 Jackson Wray, 7 Jacques Burger, 6 Kelly Brown (c), 5 Mouritz Botha, 4 George Kruis, 3 Matt Stevens, 2 John Smit, 1 Rhys Gill.
Replacements: 16 Jamie George, 17 Mako Vunipola, 18 Carlos Nieto, 19 Eoin Sheriff, 20 Justin Melck, 21 Richard Wigglesworth, 22 Alex Goode, 23 Duncan Taylor.

Worcester Warriors: 15 Chris Pennell, 14 Josh Drauniniu, 13 Alex Grove, 12 Josh Matavesi, 11 David Lemi, 10 Danny Gray, 9 Jonny Arr, 8 Semisi Taulava, 7 Matt Kvesic, 6 Neil Best, 5 Chris Jones, 4 James Percival (c), 3 John Andress, 2 Ed Shervington, 1 Matt Mullan.
Replacements: 16 Aleki Lutui, 17 Ceri Jones, 18 Rob O'Donnell, 19 Dean Schofield, 20 Jake Abbott, 21 Paul Hodgson, 22 Joe Carlisle, 23 Jon Clarke.

What they said...

Saracens boss Mark McCall

"Worcester have quality players throughout their line-up and are well coached by Richard Hill. They regularly prove they are capable of producing high quality displays against any opposition and they will provide a stern test for us, but we can't wait to run out at Allianz Park once again."

Worcester head coach Richard Hill

"I watched Leicester and Harlequins play Exeter and we made more line breaks than both of those teams put together so it does show that we're moving in the right direction. It's a good challenge against Saracens and we're going to go down there and play as much rugby as we can. On their new pitch it will be a very exciting all-action game and the ball will be in play for a lot of the time."

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