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England Saxons head to Exeter to face O2 Ireland Wolfhounds

02 November 2011

  • Second Sandy Park date for Stuart Lancaster's side
  • Exeter's a great venue for game, says Saxon's boss 
Jordan Crane in action in the Saxons' last outing at Exeter

Photo: Getty Images

England Saxons will return to Exeter for their opening game of the 2011-12 international campaign.

The Saxons, coached by Stuart Lancaster, will face the O2 Ireland Wolfhounds in Devon on Saturday, January 28 (5pm). The game will be the Saxons’ second appearance at Sandy Park. They scored five tries there in beating Italy A 34-5 in February 2007.

Current senior internationals Nick Easter, Dylan Hartley, James Haskell and Richard Wigglesworth all played that night following the official opening of the £15million stadium.

"We’re all looking forward to our return to Exeter in the New Year," said head coach Lancaster.

"The Westcountry is such a passionate rugby area and Sandy Park’s a great venue for an international game for the players and we hope the supporters will turn out and get behind the team as we bring some of the best young players in the country to the South West.

"We’ve built up a great rivalry with Ireland in the last few years, beating them at Bath last year and then being edged out at Ravenhill nine months ago.

"It’ll be a really competitive game and a great opportunity for players just outside the senior Elite Players Squad to put down a marker ahead of the RBS 6 Nations."

The Saxons will confirm details of a second international game – in February next year – in due course.

Flanker Tom Johnson became the first Exeter Chiefs player to appear for England Saxons, featuring in all three matches in this summer’s successful Churchill Cup campaign against the USA, Tonga and Canada.

Tickets priced from £15 for adults and £10 for children should be available from November 10 through the club’s ticketline 08443 247147 – via the Chiefs website www.exeterchiefs.co.ukor by calling into the Sandy Park office, open Monday to Friday from 10am to 4pm.