Team news: Lockwood in for Exeter trip

Friday 10 March 2023 Written by: Adam

The blind-side flanker forms part of a side hoping to complete a home-and-away double over the Devonians, who were beaten 24-21 when they visited the North East back in November.

Newcastle were 15-14 winners on their last trip to Sandy Park, and welcome full-back Elliott Obatoyinbo back into their starting XV.

He joins an otherwise unchanged back-line – the only other switches in the side seeing Pedro Rubiolo moving into the second row and Richard Palframan coming in at tight-head prop.

On the bench there could be a first Premiership appearance of the season for wing Iwan Stephens, with head coach Dave Walder determined his side will start more quickly than they did last time out against London Irish.

Trailing 19-0 against the Exiles, the Falcons drew back to 19-all before losing out in the closing quarter, Walder saying: “You just can’t afford to give teams a head start in a league as good as this.

“The resilience we’ve got in the group is fantastic to see and the lads will always give their all in battling back from difficult situations, but you don’t want to be in that position every week.

“We’re having to call on that resilience much more often than we would like to because we’ve allowed teams to build a lead against us. We’ve got the game plan in place – we just need to go out there on the day and do it rather than having to rally half-way through the match.”

Walder added: “We have to focus on getting our processes right, which is ultimately what will give us more chances to win games.

“We want as many wins as possible between now and the end of the season regardless of what league position that puts us in, and Saturday will be a good test.

“Exeter are a strong side even though they had a big defeat away to Harlequins last weekend, and we’re under no illusions about the quality we’ll be facing.

“We’ve beaten them once this season and we won down there on our last visit, so we’ve shown we can do it. But it all hinges on getting our processes right and implementing the game plan from the start.”

Saturday’s game is being shown live on PRTV for £4.99. [**Click here**][1] to book your stream.

**Newcastle Falcons team v Exeter Chiefs (Saturday, 2.30pm, Sandy Park)**

15 Elliott Obatoyinbo, 14 Adam Radwan, 13 Matias Moroni, 12 Matias Orlando, 11 Mateo Carreras, 10 Brett Connon, 9 Michael Young (captain); 1 Adam Brocklebank, 2 Jamie Blamire, 3 Richard Palframan, 4 Pedro Rubiolo, 5 Sebastian de Chaves, 6 Freddie Lockwood, 7 Callum Chick, 8 Carl Fearns.

**Replacements:** 16 Ollie Fletcher, 17 Logovi’i Mulipola, 18 Mark Tampin, 19 Matthew Dalton, 20 Tom Marshall, 21 Sam Stuart, 22 Pete Lucock, 23 Iwan Stephens.

Not available for selection: Phil Brantingham, Conrad Cade, Connor Collett, Luke Coulston, Trevor Davison, Gary Graham, Ewan Greenlaw, Conor Kenny, Zach Kerr, Charlie Maddison, Tom Penny, Guy Pepper, Greg Peterson, Vereimi Qorowale, Mike Rewcastle, Sean Robinson, Oliver Spencer, Philip van der Walt, George Wacokecoke, Will Welch.

Referee: Tom Foley.