Fixtures - Top Bar

Zach Mercer to lead England U20 against Italy

England Under 20 have made eight changes to the starting line-up for their Six Nations match against Italy at the Northern Echo Arena on Friday (7:45pm kick off).

Jamie Blamire, Josh Caulfield, Ben Curry, Ciaran Knight and Alex Mitchell all start for the first time in the match which will be broadcast live on Sky Sports Mix.

In addition, Harlequins wing Sam Aspland-Robinson and Saracens’ Jack Nay return after missing the match against Wales in Colwyn Bay. Saracens centre Dominic Morris starts at outside centre to earn his third England U20 cap.

Zach Mercer will captain the team following Ben Earl’s knee injury which ruled him out of the tournament.

Mercer, who has featured regularly in the Aviva Premiership for Bath this season, received the Man of the Match award against Wales. The 19-year old’s stand-out performance included a fantastic individual effort to score a late try which sealed England’s second win of this season’s Six Nations.

England Under 20 coach Tom Williams said: “Zach Mercer loves to chat among the group and isn’t afraid of expressing his opinion. That coupled with his leadership qualities and experience meant that he was the first name that came to mind when we lost Ben Earl through injury.”

Rory Brand, Max Davies, Marcus Smith, Marcus Street and Henry Walker are named among the replacements and could all make their England U20 debuts.

Harlequins fly-half Smith and Exeter Chiefs front row forward Street have been promoted from the England Under 18 squad after recently impressing in last week’s Premiership Rugby Under 18 Academy Finals Day at Sixways Stadium.

England U20 team to face Italy U20:

15. Tom Parton (London Irish)
14. Sam Aspland-Robinson (Harlequins)
13. Dominic Morris (Saracens)
12. Max Wright (Yorkshire Carnegie)
11. Gabriel Ibitoye (Harlequins)
10. Jacob Umaga (Wasps)
9. Alex Mitchell (Northampton Saints)
1. Ollie Dawe (Bristol Rugby)
2. Jamie Blamire (Newcastle Falcons)
3. Ciaran Knight (Gloucester Rugby)
4. Josh Caulfield (Exeter Chiefs)
5. Nick Isiekwe (Saracens)
6. Jack Nay (Saracens)
7. Ben Curry (Sale Sharks)
8. Zach Mercer (Bath Rugby) captain

Replacements:

16. Henry Walker (Gloucester Rugby)
17. Alex Seville (Gloucester Rugby)
18. Marcus Street (Exeter Chiefs)
19. Max Davies (Newcastle Falcons)
20. Josh Bayliss (Bath Rugby)
21. Rory Brand (London Irish)
22. Marcus Smith (Harlequins)
23. Joe Cokanasiga (London Irish)

England U20’s 2017 Six Nations fixtures:

All of England’s remaining U20 Six Nations fixtures will be shown live on Sky Sports.

England 59 – 17 France: Saturday 4th February – Sandy Park, Exeter
Wales 21 – 37 England: Friday 10th February – Eirias Park, Colwyn Bay
England v Italy: Friday 24th February – Darlington Mowden Park (7:45pm KO)
England v Scotland: Saturday 11th March – Franklin’s Gardens, Northampton (6:15pm KO)
Ireland v England: Friday 17th March – Donnybrook Stadium, (6:00pm KO)

Latest News

Jack Nowell relishing Exeter Chiefs return

Cornishman Jack Nowell says he cannot wait to pull on an Exeter Chiefs jersey again as he gears up for…

Jack Nowell

Mark Jennings Signs New Two Year Deal

Sale Sharks are delighted to announce that centre Mark Jennings has signed a new two year deal with the club.…

Mark Jennings

Team News: Bristol Rugby vs Gloucester Rugby

Sam Jeffries is set for his first Aviva Premiership start when Bristol host Gloucester in the West Country derby on…

Billy Searle

Gloucester Rugby name side for West Country derby at Bristol

Henry Trinder will make his first start in the Aviva Premiership this season as Gloucester make seven changes to their…

Henry Trinder

Sam Lewis: Worcester Warriors not letting up

Worcester Warriors went a long way to securing their Aviva Premiership Rugby safety last time out but flanker Sam Lewis…

Michael Dowsett signs permanent Worcester Warriors deal

Warriors have completed the permanent signing of English-qualified scrum-half Michael Dowsett. Dowsett, who celebrates his 25th birthday today, has made…

Michael Dowsett

Newcastle Falcons sign forward pair

Newcastle Falcons have strengthened their forward pack for next season with the signings of Lyon prop Sami Mavinga and Jersey…

Sami Mavinga

Wasps’ Dan Robson set to earn 100th top-flight appearance against Worcester

Wasps scrum-half Dan Robson is set to make his 100th Aviva Premiership Rugby appearance when the league leaders host Worcester…

‘One Turf Concept’ agreed by rugby, soccer and hockey

World Rugby, FIFA and the International Hockey Federation (FIH) have developed a ground-breaking protocol for multi-surface playing fields that could…

Premiership Rugby Balls

Referee appointments: Wayne Barnes takes charge of 180th Aviva Premiership Rugby clash

Referee Wayne Barnes makes his return to Aviva Premiership Rugby action this weekend, as he takes charge of the huge…

Bath Rugby’s Semesa Rokoduguni raring to go for The Clash

Bath winger Semesa Rokoduguni is already counting down the days until his side meet with old rivals Leicester Tigers in…

Semesa Rokoduguni

Aviva Premiership Rugby on BT Sport and ITV

England’s triumphant Six Nations stars will return to their Aviva Premiership Rugby clubs this weekend to continue their assault on…

Sam Aspland-Robinson and Calum Waters re-sign with Harlequins

Harlequins is delighted to confirm today (Wednesday 22nd March) that Academy members Sam Aspland-Robinson and Calum Waters have committed their…

Calum Waters

George Nott Signs A Five Year Deal With Sale Sharks

George Nott has become the latest Sale Sharks player to commit his long term future to the club after signing…

George Nott

Will Hurrell: Bristol Rugby will fight until the very end

Bristol Rugby have been left to lick their wounds for almost three weeks following their disappointing defeat to Worcester Warriors…

Break came at the right time for rejuvenated Sale Sharks, says Magnus Lund

Sale Sharks’ Magnus Lund believes his teammates have taken the opportunity to clear their heads during the Aviva Premiership Rugby…

Leicester Tigers’ George McGuigan ready to kick on after Anglo-Welsh Cup triumph

Leicester Tigers hooker George McGuigan believes his side can draw on their Anglo-Welsh Cup victory over Exeter Chiefs when they…

Jonny May itching to return for Gloucester Rugby ahead of Bristol challenge

Gloucester Rugby winger Jonny May is raring to play again in club colours after featuring in three of England’s four victories in a title-winning…

Marc Jones and Will Cliff re-sign for Sale Sharks

Sale Sharks are delighted to announce that Marc Jones and Will Cliff have re-signed for Sale Sharks, both on two…

Marc Jones and Will Cliff re-sign for Sale Sharks