SAMOAN international Logovi’i Mulipola returns to the starting side tomorrow evening as Newcastle Falcons look to make it two Premiership Rugby Cup wins out of two when they travel to Sale Sharks.

Mulipola will line up at tight-head prop in one of seven changes to the Falcons side that claimed a 34-27 win over Wasps in last weekend’s opening pool game.

Rob Farrar starts in the second row having made a successful comeback from injury off the bench last weekend, and will be partnered by American international Greg Peterson. Gary Graham captains the team from number eight, with Adam Brocklebank coming in at loose-head prop.

Brett Connon takes the number ten shirt with Will Haydon-Wood slotting in at inside centre, while Nathan Earle comes in on the right wing as Alex Tait, fresh from scoring two tries against Wasps, drops to full-back. George Wacokecoke pushes out onto the other wing following Iwan Stephens’ knee injury.

“It’s great to have that mix of your up-and-coming players combined with the likes of a Gary Graham, Logo Mulipola and Alex Tait, who have been there and done it,” said defence coach Nick Easter. “The young guys will really benefit from that, and bring their energy and exuberance to the table along with all the experience of the older boys.

“Sale will pose a massive threat, and we’re expecting them to go pretty strong in terms of their selection. It’s the closest team we’ve got even though it’s two-and-a-half hours away, so we’re looking forward to going down the road and showing what we can do.”

The Premiership Rugby Cup is very much the poor relation of the top-flight calendar when compared to the league programme, but given the lack of opportunity for youngsters below first-team level, Easter feels it still has a useful role.

“It’s an interesting debate regarding how the rugby calendar is structured, and whether there are too many games,” he said. “Sometimes, less is more, but on the flip side of the argument, with the A-League not taking place, it means clubs have got a lot of players on their books who haven’t been getting much game time.

“The Premiership Rugby Cup comes in and serves a purpose in that regard. You want to see guys in a proper match environment rather than just watching them train for months on end."