TOP BAR - Fixtures

England U20 name squad to play Australia

England Head Coach Martin Haag has made five changes to his side for their final pool game of the World Rugby Under 20 Championship.

Haag's side take on Australia at Sale Sharks' AJ Bell Stadium on Wednesday (kick-off 7.45pm, live on Sky Sports 3). 

Victory would seal top spot in Pool B for England who have secured successive bonus-point victories from their opening two fixtures in Manchester.

George Perkins of Aviva Premiership Rugby champions Saracens, who played in last year’s U20 World Championship, gets his first action of the tournament on the wing, while Gloucester Rugby scrum-half Harry Randall earns a starting spot. 

Lewis Boyce is joined in the front row by fellow prop Will Stuart, both of whom were among the replacements against Scotland, with Bath Rugby’s Zach Mercer chosen at No. 8 for England.

“There is fantastic depth in this squad, there are some guys who haven’t had much game time and we’re trying to give them a little bit more,” said Haag. 

“It is about the wider 28, we are all in this together, this is our third game in eight days and it is important we manage players as well as selecting a side which we believe can get the result.

“This is a team that has a great attacking intent and who can score tries from a number of different sources. It is a team that is composed, enjoys each other’s company, who are proud to wear the England shirt and play at a level that they themselves aspire to.”

England, who will again be led by hooker Jack Walker, have so far recorded victories against Italy (48-10) and Scotland (44-0), scoring 11 tries and conceding just one.

However, Haag says his side can improve yet further as they look to seal top spot in the pool.

“For us it’s about improving each game,” he said. “We’ve created lots of opportunities so we want to find that clinical edge not only in attack but all areas – set piece, general play and in our defence.

“We’ve seen everything we wanted to see from the players in the first two games, we just want to be that much better, that’s our challenge collectively and individually."

Elsewhere, Bath Rugby’s Darren Atkins is picked at full-back, with Harlequin Joe Marchant and London Irish’s Johnny Williams making up England’s midfield pairing.

Saracen Matt Gallagher is on the opposite wing to Perkins while Northampton Saints’ Harry Mallinder again plays at fly-half.

Harlequin Stan South and Worcester Warrior Huw Taylor form England’s second-row pairing while Sale Shark George Nott and Leicester Tiger Will Evans join Mercer in the back row.

Australia lost their opening fixture against Scotland with a bonus-point victory over Italy giving them six points in Pool B.

And Haag is expecting a stern test off the Australian side who need to beat England to have any chance of progressing through to the semi-finals as pool leaders.

“This is an opportunity to play against a world-class team in Australia and to test ourselves against their class and quality of opposition,” he said. “It’s about this group playing and expressing themselves.

“We are not focusing too much on other people or beyond the pool stages. It’s about the here and now and trying to get a good result against Australia and we know that we have to play at the highest level in order to do that.

“For us we’ll take it game by game in an attempt to progress to a level that we can be really proud of.”
 
England squad to play Australia: 
 
15 Darren Atkins (Bath Rugby)
14 George Perkins (Saracens)
13 Joe Marchant (Harlequins)
12 Johnny Williams (London Irish)
11 Matt Gallagher (Saracens)
10 Harry Mallinder (Northampton Saints)
9 Harry Randall (Gloucester Rugby)
 
1 Lewis Boyce (Yorkshire Carnegie)
2 Jack Walker – captain (Yorkshire Carnegie)
3 Will Stuart (Wasps)
4 Stan South (Harlequins)
5 Huw Taylor (Worcester Warriors)
6 George Nott (Sale Sharks)
7 Will Evans (Leicester Tigers)
8 Zach Mercer (Bath Rugby)

Replacements:
16 Jack Singleton (Worcester Warriors)
17 Billy Keast (Exeter Chiefs)
18 Billy Walker (Saracens)
19 Jack Willis (Wasps)
20 Josh Bainbridge (Yorkshire Carnegie)
21 Max Green (Yorkshire Carnegie)
22 Max Malins (Saracens)
23 Max Wright (Yorkshire Carnegie)
 
England Pool B fixtures:
England 48-10 Italy (Tuesday 7 June) KO 19:45, Manchester City Academy Stadium
England 44-0 Scotland (Saturday 11 June) KO 18:00, Manchester City Academy Stadium
England v Australia (Wednesday 15 June) KO 19:45 AJ Bell Stadium
Semi-finals and knock-out matches (Monday 20 June) Details TBC
Final and knock-out games (Saturday 25 June) Details TBC

For tickets and more information about the World Rugby U20 Championship visit: http://www.englandrugby.com/u20championships/  #FutureStarsofRugby
 

Latest News

Joe Marler commits to Harlequins until 2021

Harlequins is thrilled to announce today, Friday 18th August, that England and British and Irish Lions prop, Joe Marler, has…

Joe Marler

European fixtures to be released on Tuesday

The fixtures for the 2017/18 Champions Cup and Challenge Cup season will be announced on Tuesday, 22 August at 3.00pm…

Rokoduguni starts for Bath Rugby against Ospreys

Semesa Rokoduguni will make his first appearance of pre-season when Bath Rugby take on Ospreys at the Liberty Stadium on…

Harlequins team to play Jersey Reds

Harlequins has announced the squad to play Jersey Reds in the final match of the 2017/18 pre-season campaign, at The…

Francis Saili

Stringer starts for Worcester Warriors at Birmingham Moseley

Summer signing Peter Stringer will get his first start for Warriors on Friday night as his side take on Birmingham…

London Irish name side for Ealing Trailfinders clash

London Irish have named a 30-man squad for this Friday’s pre-season clash with Ealing Trailfinders at Hazelwood (kick-off 7.30pm). The…

Gloucester Rugby announce line-ups for preseason friendly at Leinster

Gloucester Rugby will give game time to a number of their first team squad in Leinster on Friday evening as…

American rugby players and coaches to get once in a lifetime opportunity

Thirty American rugby players and coaches are being handed the chance of a lifetime to train in England with Premiership…

Stephen Myler: Northampton Saints ready to fight for the title

Stephen Myler is predicting the closest ever Aviva Premiership Rugby campaign and believes his Northampton Saints side will be right…

Sonatane Takulua expecting big things from Newcastle Falcons this season

Sonatane Takulua believes unity and a collective purpose, combined with an improved playing pool, can help propel Newcastle Falcons up…

Sonatane Takulua

Wasps name team for first pre-season fixture against Ulster

Dai Young has named a 26-man squad to take on Ulster Rugby at Kingspan Stadium in the first pre-season fixture…

Anglo-Welsh Cup 2017-18 launched

WORCESTER WARRIORS have the honour of hosting the opening match in this year’s Anglo-Welsh Cup on Friday 3 November, when…

Leicester Tigers win the Anglo Welsh Cup

Ally Hogg pleased by Newcastle Falcons’ early progress

Ally Hogg believes Newcastle Falcons are well set to attack the new Aviva Premiership season after a double dose of…

Ally Hogg

Topsy Ojo relishing Exiles return to Aviva Premiership Rugby action at HQ

Topsy Ojo believes there could be no more fitting way for London Irish to announce their return as an Aviva…

Newcastle Falcons’ Sonatane Takulua sees Philadelphia trip as a ‘great opportunity’

Newcastle Falcons’ Sonatane Takulua insists his side’s September clash with Saracens in Philadelphia will be no holiday for the players,…

Sonatane Takulua

Harlequins statement: Luke Wallace and Jonas Mikalcius

Harlequins can confirm today (Tuesday 15th August) that flanker Luke Wallace dislocated his hip during the pre-season friendly against London…

Luke Wallace

London Irish kick-off Anglo-Welsh Cup at home to Bath

London Irish will host Bath Rugby at the Madejski Stadium in the opening round of the Anglo-Welsh Cup on Saturday…

London Irish kick-off Anglo-Welsh Cup at home to Bath

HITZ graduate secures first full time job after being inspired by Premiership Rugby final

A teenager from Leigh who overcame a troubled home life and tackled confidence and communication issues thanks to Premiership Rugby…

Lucy Neal

Nick Kennedy delighted with first pre-season hit-out for London Irish

London Irish director of rugby Nick Kennedy is looking forward to seeing his side build on Saturday’s thrilling contest against…

Nick Kennedy