Luke Northmore cannot wait to link up with midfield partner Joe Marchant as Harlequins attempt to stifle Gloucester Rugby’s exciting backline at Kingsholm.

Quins travel to the Cherry and Whites for the final game of Round 20 in the Premiership, with the visitors just one point better off in sixth ahead of their showdown.

And Gloucester have named a much-changed team from the one that lost to Exeter last time out, with Danny Cipriani, Louis Rees-Zammit, Ollie Thorley and Jonny May all retuning.

Paul Gustard has also rung the changes from Quins’ midweek win over London Irish, with Northmore one of the few players to retain his place at outside centre. “I’ve been enjoying the rotation of games and being able to put my front foot forward and put my hand up for selection,” said 23-year-old Northmore.

But Northmore will have a new partner for the clash against Gloucester in Marchant and he hopes the pairing can combat the hosts’ own electrifying backline.

“Billy Twelvetrees normally plays a big role in their playmaking along with Danny Cipriani, he’s a big man but he also has the ability to play out from the back,” he continued.

“They’ve got a lot of talent in the backline with Chris Harris, he’s a Scotland international, he’s really come on the scene in the last couple of years and taken that team to a new level.

“I think we’ll have to be ready defensively, we’ll have to be switched on, but our focus is to take away time and space – keep doing what we’re doing.

“When we get the chance to hit, let’s be really physical. I’m really looking forward to pairing up with Joe [Marchant], it’s probably something that is unexpected for a lot of us.

“We probably don’t expect to play together but he’s an unbelievable talent and I know he will create a lot of things and I hope I can help him create – and he’ll do the same for me.”

Northmore is also looking forward to playing in the same backline with Marcus Smith again, stressing just how impressive the young fly-half is for a 21-year-old.

He said: “He has a very cool head for a very young man, he runs the game really well and he always has the ability to put us in space and help me achieve tries – and do what I do best.”