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Ealing bolster back row with signing from Exeter who goes straight into Friday's starting XV

By Sam Smith

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Promotion-chasing Ealing have signed Exeter back-rower Max Northcote-Green and immediately thrown him into the Championship fray by including him in their starting XV for Friday night’s game at Bedford.

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The 27-year-old forward spent the past four months at Exeter providing cover for Rob Baxter’s squad after previous stints at London Irish and Bath and loan spells with Coventry and Rosslyn Park.

Northcote-Green, who stands 6ft 2 and weighs 107kgs, will look to use his strong ball-carrying skills as Ealing seek to consolidate their place at the top of the Championship ahead of next month’s likely title decider versus Saracens.

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“It was a bit of a no-brainer really, a new challenge at a club that has got a lot of aspirations and I can’t wait to be a part of that journey,” he said to the Ealing website.

“The boys have made me feel really settled, there is lots of strength and depth in the back row and they have brought me up to speed with the plays and how they run things. There’s a reason why they have so much success you see how tough the training is and I can’t wait to get stuck in now.”

Delighted to add another back-rower just weeks after signing six-times capped USA player Malon Al-Jiboori, Trailfinders boss Ben Ward added: “We are really excited to have Max on board in time for the final run into the end of the season. He brings a hard-working physical game, which has seen him compete at the highest level for established Premiership teams, and we are looking forward to seeing what he can add to the group. He has quickly got to grips with life here at the club and has settled well, enjoying his first few training sessions.”

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EALING (vs Bedford, Friday): 15. David Johnston; 14. Charlie Walker, 13. Max Bodilly, 12. Pat Howard, 11. Angus Kernohan; 10. Steven Shingler, 9. Craig Hampson; 1. James Gibbons, 2. Shaun Malton, 3. Lewis Thiede, 4. Bobby de Wee, 5. James Cannon, 6. Max Northcote-Green, 7. Simon Uzokwe, 8. Rayn Smid (capt). Reps: 16. Michael van Vuuren, 17. Will Davis, 18. Kyle Whyte, 19. Harry Casson, 20. Kieran Murphy, 21. Jordan Burns, 22. Luke Daniels, 23. Guy Thompson.

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Ealing bolster back row with signing from Exeter who goes straight into Friday's starting XV

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