Exiles will have their hands full tomorrow evening as they take up what has become a mammoth task this season, that of challenging Exeter in their own backyard.
While neither team emerged victorious in Round 20 – Exter going down 40-17 to Saracens and Exiles losing out to Worcester 40-27 – Exeter have had other fish to fry since then, reaching the final of the Champions Cup to be played on 17 October.
Because of their European campaign coupled with the fact that they currently enjoy a more-than-comfortable 13-point lead at the top of the Premiership table (thus, guaranteed a spot in the play-offs), Rob Baxter has elected to put something of a second-string side out on the field against London Irish so as to put some juice back in the legs of the players who will challenge Racing 92 in the middle of next month.
A diluted Exeter outfit could present an opportunity for London Irish to post their first win since Round 11 as they look to finish off their campaign on a high. In light of this, it is safe to say that Exiles will throw everything they have at their opponents tomorrow.
The last clash between these two left Exiles battered as Exeter took the victory 45-28 at Madejski Stadium – the visitors letting themselves down towards the end with two yellow cards which stretched their defences thin, allowing London Irish to score a brace of late tries.
If the resolve of Exiles is strong, this one could go either way.
The hosts make wholesale changes with England International Don Armand heading up a youthful-looking home pack.
Behind, Stu Townsend makes his first appearance since February at scrum-half, while outside of him there is decent experience in the shape of Ollie Devoto, Tom Hendrickson and Phil Dollman, who continues to flourish in his final weeks as a Chiefs player.
Harry Elrington, Matt Cornish and Ollie Hoskins make up the front row, with George Nott and Sebastian de Chaves combining in the second row.
Matt Rogerson, who captains the side, is at blindside flanker and Ben Donnell is at openside flanker. Albert Tuisue completes the pack from the number 8 berth.
Ben Meehan and Paddy Jackson are the halfback duo, with Phil Cokanasiga and Curtis Rona forming the centre partnership.
London Irish Academy graduates make up the back three, as Ollie Hassell-Collins and Ben Loader are named on the wings, with Tom Homer at fullback.