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London Welsh v Newport Gwent Dragons: LV= Cup match preview
There is little but pride to play for on Sunday as London Welsh take on the Newport Gwent Dragons in the LV= Cup at the Kassam Stadium.
Welsh give a debut to new signing Gonzalo Tiesi as they round off their Cup campaign with an historic first-ever competitive clash against the Dragons.
Head coach Lyn Jones makes 11 changes, including one positional, from the side beaten 23-6 by Harlequins at the Twickenham Stoop last weekend.
Joe Ajuwa starts on the right wing in place of Nick Scott, while Sonny Parker moves from outside to inside centre with Tiesi starting in the number 13 jersey. Ryan Davis comes in for Gordon Ross at fly half.
In the pack, loosehead Tom Bristow is the only forward to retain his place from the defeat at Quins. Neil Briggs returns at hooker and Greg Bateman comes in at tight head, in place of Dan George and Paulica Ion.
The Dragons suffered a few injuries to the team that faced the Ospreys, including Mike Poole, Rob Sidoli and Jonathan Evans.
Tom Brown's injury also prevents him from returning to his old team's new stomping ground.
London Welsh: 15 Tom Voyce, 14 Joe Ajuwa, 13 Gonzalo Tiesi, 12 Sonny Parker, 11 Phil MacKenzie, 10 Ryan Davis, 9 Alex Davies, 1 Tom Bristow, 2 Neil Briggs, 3 Greg Bateman, 4 Jonathan Mills, 5 Matt Corker, 6 Lee Beach (c), 7 Ryan Newman, 8 Daniel Browne.
Replacements: 16 Gareth Evans, 17 Franck Montanella, 18 James Tideswell, 19 Adam Brown, 20 Ed Williamson, 21 Tyson Keats, 22 Gavin Henson, 23 James Lewis.
Dragons Squad: Hallam Amos, Dan Evans, Tom Prydie, Matthew Pewtner, Will Harries, Ashley Smith, Jack Dixon , Pat Leach, Steffan Jones, Wayne Evans, Rhys Downes, Jevon Groves, Ieuan Jones, Lewis Evans, Darren Waters, Nic Cudd, Josh Tyler, Adam Jones, Ian Nimmo, Phil Price, Owen Evans, Nathan Williams, Dan Way, Hugh Gustafson, Sam Parry.
What they said ...
Dragons' Darren Waters
"It's been a tough year in the Waters household, with both my injury but mostly my partner's illness, alongside bringing up two young kids. It will be nice to get out on the field on Sunday and put all of my frustrations behind me."
London Welsh's new signing Gonzalo Tiesi
"I'm very pleased to be back in the Premiership after a few years. It's exciting times for London Welsh - it's a club with a lot of history. I'm very excited about the squad; everyone has the goal of retaining the club's Premiership position."
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|Saturday 31st January|
|14:40||Harlequins vs Bath|
|15:00||Leicester vs Northampton|
|15:00||Gloucester vs Ospreys|
|18:30||Scarlets vs London Irish|
|Sunday 1st February|
|14:00||Wasps vs Cardiff Blues|
|14:30||London Welsh vs Saracens|
|14:30||Newport Gwent D'gons vs Exeter|
|15:00||Newcastle vs Sale Sharks|
|Saturday 7th February|
|14:00||Sale vs Scarlets|
|14:30||Cardiff Blues vs Leicester|
|15:00||Gloucester vs Harlequins|
|15:00||Bath vs Ospreys|
|15:00||London Irish vs Newcastle|
|15:15||Northampton vs Wasps|
|Sunday 8th February|
|14:30||Newport Gwent D'gons vs London Welsh|
|15:00||Saracens vs Exeter|
Read the thoughts and opinions of Phil Edwards with skysports.com