Jersey Reds return to home turf at Stade Santander International for a Friday Night Lights Cup encounter against Yorkshire Carnegie

It’s the first match of the 2017-18 British & Irish Cup, a competition that the Reds reached the final of last season, only to lose by a point to Munster ‘A’ in Cork.

The home side will be looking to repeat a hard-fought victory in their last encounter against Carnegie, a 24-19 league win on home turf that snapped a nine-game losing streak against the Leeds-based club.

The match will be the third B&I Cup contest between the sides; the Reds won 27-33 at York RUFC in October 2012, but lost 12-27 at home the following January and then were on the wrong end of an agonising 33-32 semi-final defeat at Headingley in March 2016.

The Reds squad has been badly affected by a spate of injuries, but is strengthened by two new faces who are in line to make their debuts – forward Jake Upfield and centre Scott McClurg are selected on the bench, alongside summer signing Jordan Brodley, the prop in line to make his competitive debut for his new club.

In the starting back-line, Kieran Hardy and Brendan Cope are reunited at half-back, and both Ellis Abrahams and Josh Hodson join the threequarter line alongside Tom Pincus and Apakuki Ma’afu, with Jason Worrall at full-back.

In the pack, the front row trio who started last weekend’s league match at Ealing Trailfinders are retained en bloc, with Roy Godfrey captaining the side at loose-head alongside hooker Nick Selway and Jake Armstrong. There’s a first competitive selection of the season for Uili Kolo’ofa’i, the Tongan international back from injury in pre-season and selected at lock alongside James Voss, and in the back row Matt Rogerson moves to number 8 with Conor Joyce and Rory Bartle on the flanks.

Two other Reds sides are in action this Saturday. While Jersey Reds Athletic travel to Esher, Jersey Reds Women play their first home league match of 2017/18 – the game against Basingstoke kicks off at 1pm.

Jersey Reds squad v Yorkshire Carnegie (H) – British & Irish Cup, Round 1/6, Friday October 13th, Stade Santander International; k-o 7.45pm

Backs (15-9)

Jason Worrall

Tom Pincus

Ellis Abrahams

Apakuki Ma’afu

Josh Hodson

Brendan Cope

Kieran Hardy

Forwards (1-8)

Roy Godfrey (capt)

Nick Selway

Jake Armstrong

James Voss

Uili Kolo’ofa’i

Rory Bartle

Conor Joyce

Matt Rogerson

Replacements

Jack Macfarlane, Jordan Brodley, Alec Clarey, Jerry Sexton, Jake Upfield; Joel Dudley, Scott McClurg