LONDON Irish will kick-off the 2017/18 Aviva Premiership season against Harlequins in the traditional London Double Header on Saturday, September 2.

Exiles take on Quins following the conclusion of Saracens versus Northampton Saints, which will form the first part of a blockbuster at the home of English rugby.

Irish’s first away trip of the season sees them taking on reigning Aviva Premiership champions Exeter Chiefs at Sandy Park on Saturday, September 9.

A trip to Sale Sharks’ AJ Bell Stadium beckons for Nick Kennedy’s men a week later, before they host Northampton Saints at Madejski Stadium on Sunday, September 24.

Irish round off the month away to Dean Richards’ Newcastle Falcons live on BT Sport, with Leicester Tigers the visitors to Reading the following weekend.

European Champions Cup winners Saracens welcome the Exiles to Allianz Park on Saturday, October 28. Then during the November internationals, Exiles host Bath and Wasps, with the festive programme delivering a trip to Worcester Warriors on Saturday, December 23 before the visit of Newcastle to the Madejski seven days later.

Irish end the campaign away to Bath on Saturday, May 5.

London Irish Director of Rugby Nick Kennedy commented: “Fixture release day is always exciting.

“We’re delighted to be involved in the London Double Header first up, an event which gives us a great platform to kick-off the new season at Twickenham Stadium. London Irish and Harlequins have had some fantastic battles over the years, and we’re all looking forward to taking them on at the home of English rugby.

“The Aviva Premiership is going to be very competitive this season and we are relishing the challenge of going toe to toe with the other 11 clubs. To play in these huge games week in, week out is what we strived for throughout last season.

“The lads are working extremely hard ahead of what promises to be an exciting season against some of the best players in the world.”

  • LONDON Irish have confirmed their 2017/18 pre-season schedule.

Exiles host Harlequins at Hazelwood in the annual Cunningham Duncombe Cup on Saturday, August 12 before welcoming Ealing Trailfinders on Friday, August 18.

Irish round off their pre-season schedule against Richmond at the Athletic Ground on Saturday, August 26.

The Singha Premiership Rugby 7s kicks-off the Exiles’ pre-season rota, held on Friday, July 28 and Saturday, July 29.