Henson keen to make up for lost time at London Welsh

Wimbledon Guardian: Fresh start: Gavin Henson has the chance to fulfil his Premiership potential at London Welsh Fresh start: Gavin Henson has the chance to fulfil his Premiership potential at London Welsh

Gavin Henson has revealed his excitement at making his Premiership debut for London Welsh on Sunday.

The British & Irish Lion will make his first appearance for the Exiles since he suffered a minor fracture to his cheekbone during London Welsh’s pre-season fixture against the Scarlets on August 25.

Henson, who replaces Gordon Ross at number ten, is one of six changes made by head coach Lyn Jones to the starting line up which went down 31-25 to Gloucester last week.

Welsh have won two of their opening five games in the top flight and Henson, signed in the summer, is keen to get involved.

“I am really looking forward to making my first start for London Welsh in the Aviva Premiership on Sunday,” said the 30-year-old.

“Having been given the opportunity by Lyn Jones and the club to play in the Premiership, it was both disappointing and frustrating to pick up an injury against Scarlets in pre-season.

“However, the boys have done really well in the first five games and now I just cannot wait to start playing my part with the rest of the team.

"I am also very excited about playing at the Kassam in front of the London Welsh supporters for the first time.

“Saracens are an extremely good side, we know that, but this is a great opportunity both for me and for London Welsh to test ourselves against one of the best teams in the Aviva Premiership.”

In other changes to the Welsh team that lost to Gloucester, hooker Dan George and centre James Lewis - making his first appearance in the top flight - replace Neil Briggs and Sonny Parker, who both picked up injuries against Gloucester.

Canadian international Phil Mackenzie comes in on the ring wing, with Tom Arscott reverting to full back and Seb Jewell named on the bench.

Mike Denbee returns to the side following the injury he sustained against Exeter Chiefs and replaces Michael Hills at openside flanker.

London Welsh and Saracens last met in a pre-season friendly in August 2009 at Old Albanians. Saracens running out 24-16 winners.

London Welsh: 15.Tom Arscott, 14, Phil MacKenzie, 13. James Lewis, 12. Hudson Tonga’uiha, 11. Nick Scott, 10. Gavin Henson, 9. Tyson Keats, 1. Frank Montanella, 2. Dan George, 3. Paulica Ion, 4 Jonathan Mills ©, 5. Matt Corker, 6. Daniel Browne, 7. Mike Denbee, 8. Ed Jackson.

Replacements: 16. Greg Bateman, 17. Tom Bristow, 18. Arthur Joly, 19. Kirill Kulemin, Alfie To’oala, 21. Nick Runciman, 22. Ryan Davis, 23. Seb Jewell.

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