Gallagher Premiership Weekend: Your ultimate guide to Round 8 as Saracens and Sale Sharks go toe-to-toe in a top-of-the-table clash

TV and live stream information as BT Sport brings you live coverage of Harlequins vs London Irish and Saracens vs Sale Sharks - plus free highlights from every game.

By Callum Davis Published: 29 October 2022 - 3.24am
Premiership Rugby Round 8

BT Sport brings you three unmissable domestic dust-ups in the last weekend of Premiership action before the autumn internationals take centre stage.

The league's top four teams are all in action on BT Sport in a bumper Round 8, while Wasps have now sadly followed the way of Worcester Warriors in being suspended from the league, with both teams to be relegated at the end of the season. 

Read on for a preview of every game plus live stream and TV channel information.

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Saturday 29 October

Harlequins vs London Irish - 2pm (3pm KO), BT Sport 1 & BT Sport Ultimate

Watch live stream from 2pm

The BT Sport cameras head to the capital on Saturday afternoon as local rivals Harlequins and London Irish go head-to-head at the Twickenham Stoop. 

Hosts Harlequins will be looking to register back-to-back Premiership wins for the first time this term after ending Sale's unbeaten start to the season in a timely return to form. 

England fly-half Marcus Smith marked his 100th Premiership appearance by scoring 24 of Quins' 29 points as a resolute defensive effort kept previously high-scoring Sale at bay.

Now Tabai Matson's men side will be looking to back that performance up at home to west London rivals London Irish. 

The Exiles are one of the most electrifying teams in the league on their day but that potential has not translated to results thus far.

Irish have won just one of their last five Premiership encounters, and their last victory on the road came back in April at Newcastle.

The recent head-to-head record also makes for grim reading if you're an Exile fan. Four of the last five meetings between these two sides have gone in Harlequins' favour, although London Irish came out on top in this equivalent fixture last season.

Quins will have to do without their Round 7 match winner Smith as he and Premiership top try scorer Cadan Murley head off to Jersey for England's pre-autumn internationals training camp in Jersey.

Irish starlets Henry Arundell and Will Joseph will also be away with England.

Can Irish bring Quins crashing back down to earth to take west London bragging rights? Or will the hosts bolster their play-off bid with a second win in two weeks?

Northampton vs Bristol - 3pm kick-off

Bristol will be hoping to address their abysmal away form when they travel to the East Midlands to take on Northampton Saints. 

Pat Lam's Bears have recorded just one win on the road in the last 12 months, a  23-8 victory at suspended Wasps back in September. 

After flying out of the traps with three wins from their opening three games, Bristol have gone three games without a victory and risk slipping out of the play-off picture with a fourth-straight reversal. 

By contrast Northampton are firmly in the mix for a top-four berth despite a topsy-turvy start to 2022/23. 

Phil Dowson's men have won three and lost four of their opening seven games to leave them fifth in the standings, two points adrift of fourth-placed Gloucester and a point clear of Quins, who have a game in hand.

Having put together back-to-back wins over Wasps and Newcastle in rounds five and six, the Saints became the first team to lose to Bath this season.

Now Northampton will be looking to return to winning ways at cinch Franklin's Gardens where they have only lost once in any competition since February.

They will have to do without three of their most talismanic forwards in the shape of Lewis Ludlam, Courtney Lawes and David Ribbands, who are away all on England duty. 

Utility back George Furbank is also part of Eddie Jones' 36-man squad leaving Saints director of rugby Dowson with a selecton headache at fly-half with Dan Biggar unavailable through injury.

 

Sunday 30 October

Saracens vs Sale Sharks - 2pm (3pm KO), BT Sport 1 & BT Sport Ultimate

Watch live stream from 2pm

The Premiership weekend comes to a close with a mouth-watering top-of-the-table clash at the StoneX Stadium.

League leaders Sarries will be looking to preserve their perfect start to the new season when they take on high-flying Sale Sharks as the two stand-out teams in the league so far square-off on Sunday afternoon.

Second in the table just one point behind pacesetters Saracens, Sale have announced themselves as one of the premier challengers to Leicester's crown.

Sale's quest for a first Premiership title since 2006 hit a round block in Round 7 as 2021 champions Harlequins claimed a 29-21 victory at the AJ Stadium.

The defeat ended Sale's undefeated start to the term and Alex Sanderson's men will be keen to get their title challenge back on track with a statement win over bookmakers' favourites Saracens. 

Both sides will be without a host of key personnel with the Autumn Nation Series just over a week away. 

Tom Curry, Bevan Rodd, Jonny Hill, Raffi Quirke and Manu Tuilagi are all missing for Sale, while Saracens will have to make do without Max Malins, Billy Vunipola, Mako Vunipola, Jack Singleton and Maro Itoje.

Uncapped Sarries lock Hugh Tizard has been rewarded for his early-season form with a first call-up, while Owen Farrell is in concussion protocol for the two weeks.

Can Mark McCall's Sarries extend their lead at the summit or will the Sharks bite back in the battle at the top?