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London Irish v Coventry Rugby: Championship round 15 team announcement

Dan Lewis celebrates his maiden Coventry try scored against Yorkshire Carnegie (pic: John Coles)

Coventry Rugby hand first league starts to Dan Lewis and Donald Brighouse in tomorrow’s round 15 Greene King IPA Championship trip to London Irish.

Lewis, who has consistently impressed from the bench and during Cov’s Championship Cup campaign, is named at fly half where Will Maisey rotates to the replacements.

The 23-year-old No.10 partners the experienced Tom Kessell at half back in a back line that is otherwise unchanged from last Saturday’s home win over Hartpury.

This means Tongan international David Halaifonua again appears at full back, the Bulumakau brothers fill the wing berths and Rob Knox combines with captain Heath Stevens in the centre.

Samoan international tight head Brighouse swaps starting and bench roles with Phil Boulton in an otherwise unchanged front row.

Cov’s coaching group have named fit-again James Voss alongside Tom Jubb in the second row, while Alex Woolford makes his return from a toe injury in the No.6 shirt.

Hooker Darren Dawidiuk and newly-signed prop Gerard Ellis are in line to face their former club from the replacements’ bench where they are part of a five-two forwards-backs split.

Coventry Rugby:

  1. James Gibbons
  2. Scott Tolmie
  3. Donald Brighouse
  4. James Voss
  5. Tom Jubb
  6. Alex Woolford
  7. Ben Nutley
  8. Ben Adams
  9. Tom Kessell
  10. Dan Lewis
  11. Andy Bulumakau
  12. Heath Stevens ©
  13. Rob Knox
  14. Junior Bulumakau
  15. David Halaifonua

Replacements:

  1. Darren Dawidiuk
  2. Gerard Ellis
  3. Phil Boulton
  4. Dan Faleafa
  5. Latu Makaafi
  6. Pete White
  7. Will Maisey

Director of rugby Rowland Winter said:

“London Irish are top of the table which tells us they are the best team in the league with plenty of resources.

“I therefore expect a tough game, but on both occasions we have played them this year we have shown there is perhaps not such a big gap as you would expect between a side that has come down from the Premiership and one that has come up from National One.

“We know we’re underdogs, but are happy with that tag, and go there with all the pressure on them since they can’t afford a slip-up.”

Watch Rowland preview the match with BBC C&W’s Geoff Foster below:

To watch all Coventry Rugby’s video content subscribe to You Tube channel Coventry Rugby 1874.

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