Norwich face tough trip to St Albans

Norwich (stripes) face a difficult trip to St Albans on Saturday. Photo: ANDY MICKLETHWAITE

Norwich (stripes) face a difficult trip to St Albans on Saturday. Photo: ANDY MICKLETHWAITE - Credit: Archant

A very different-looking Norwich side will make the trip to St Albans for the first round of the RFU Intermediate Cup.

St Albans beat Norwich 15-0 at Beeston Hyrne in the same competition last year, but tomorrow will give coach Jonny O'Brien a chance to test his squad's strength in depth.

Rested for injury reasons will be props Matt Selby and Tom Whiskin in addition to Jordi Walker and Dave Micklethwaite. The list of unavailable players includes Gareth Leake, Si Darby and Pete Hosking, plus Stuart Cameron, who is out for at least six weeks with an injury.

As a result of the front row availability issues, coach Mike Curry comes in to partner George Pope – their combined ages total 90 years. Aaron Beaumont, aged just 20, brings a youthful look to the front row at hooker. Mark Vickerstaff comes in for his first XV debut as front row replacement after training hard. Chris Drohan and Stu Seppings make up the second row while. Lawrence Austin, Chris Wall and Dave Byrne will be the back row.

O'Brien moves himself to the bench and puts Chris Parrott back at 10 with Jonny Wheater and Dougie Greenwood making their first appearances of the season after injury. A week later than planned, because of injury, colt Joe Tennant makes his debut on the bench with seasoned campaigners Mark Fernie and Callum MacAulay.

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O'Brien said 'Having been beaten by St Albans at home last year, we are expecting this to be a tough game on their home turf and although the changes from last week are numerous, it gives opportunities for improving players or those returning from injury to make selection difficult for us.'

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