Bailey earns first Premiership start for Bath Rugby

26 March 2021

Orlando Bailey will earn his first Gallagher Premiership start when Bath Rugby take on London Irish on Saturday.

A young fly-half with a lot of promise and potential, the 19-year-old has featured twice in the league as a replacement for the Blue, Black and White and will take the 10 shirt this weekend outside Ben Spencer.

Of Bailey, Attack and Backs Coach Girvan Dempsey said: “Orlando has such a strong head on his shoulders. He is a real student of the game and commands the respect of the other guys around him because of the work he puts in.

“He shows a lot of leadership and maturity for his years. He’s been brilliant and we’re delighted to see him on the field.”

Five other new faces come into starting XV for the trip to the Brentford Community Stadium.

Club captain Charlie Ewels returns from Six Nations duty in the second row alongside Josh McNally while another England international in Anthony Watson comes in at full-back.

Fresh from signing a new contract, Joe Cokanasiga is set to face his old club for the first time from the wing and Academy graduate Tom Ellis forms a back-row partnership with Sam Underhill and Zach Mercer 

Hooker Jack Walker completes the changes, packing down next to props Juan Schoeman and Henry Thomas.

Will Muir keeps his place in the side after his first two tries for the club, as do centres Jonathan Joseph and Max Clark – the latter making his 50th Premiership outing.

England duo Beno Obano and Will Stuart feature on the bench and Will Spencer is named as a replacement for the first time since November after recovering from injury. Alex Gray could come on for his second Bath appearance. 

There is also a place for homegrown Senior Academy back Max Ojomoh who is in line for his Premiership debut.

Bath Rugby side to face London Irish

15. Anthony Watson, 14. Joe Cokanasiga, 13. Jonathan Joseph, 12. Max Clark, 11. Will Muir, 10. Orlando Bailey, 9. Ben Spencer; 1. Juan Schoeman, 2. Jack Walker, 3. Henry Thomas, 4. Josh McNally, 5. Charlie Ewels ©, 6. Tom Ellis, 7. Sam Underhill, 8. Zach Mercer


16. Tom Dunn, 17. Beno Obano, 18. Will Stuart, 19. Will Spencer, 20. Miles Reid, 21. Will Chudley, 22. Max Ojomoh, 23. Alex Gray

The hosts

15. Tom Parton, 14. Ben Loader, 13. Curtis Rona, 12. Theo Brophy Clews, 11. Ollie Hassell-Collins, 10. Paddy Jackson, 9. Nick Phipps; 1. Will Goodrick-Clarke, 2. Matt Cornish, 3. Lovejoy Chawatama, 4. Chunya Munga, 5. Rob Simmons, 6. Ben Donnell, 7. Blair Cowan, 8. Matt Rogerson ©


16. Agustin Creevy, 17. Facundo Gigena, 18. Ollie Hoskins, 19. George Nott, 20. Jack Cooke, 21. Sean O’Brien, 22. Ben Meehan, 23. Will Joseph


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