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Premiership Rugby

Player boost for Churchill Cup squad

A Gallagher Premiership Rugby ball

Forwards Mike Worsley (prop), Tom Palmer (lock), Paul Volley (loose forward) and Andy Hazell (loose forward), and backs Ben Johnston (centre) and James Simpson-Daniel (wing) will depart for Vancouver on Tuesday evening.

The above-mentioned players will be joined by Wasps hooker and England Sevens regular Phil Greening, who came through this past weekend's International Rugby Board (IRB) World Sevens event at Twickenham with flying colours.

"I'm really looking forward to them joining up with the rest of us," England's Churchill Cup coach Jim Mallinder told Britain's Press Association on Monday.

"They won't be considered for the first game against Canada on Saturday so they will have a bit of time to acclimatise and shake off the jet-lag. But they will be considered and play a part next week."

Hazell and Simpson-Daniel were in the starting XV for Monday's game against the New Zealand Maori, which England won by 23-9, with Worsley, Palmer, Volley and Johnston all starting on the bench.

England got their tour off to the best possible start with their win over the NZ Maori, but with just two Tests remaining on their tour of Australasia, it made sense to trim their squad down.

Clive Woodward will name his line-up to take on the All Blacks – at the WestpacTrust Stadium in Wellington on Saturday – later in the week.

* England 'A' open their Churchill Cup account on Saturday, June 14 against Canada in Vancouver before facing the USA in the same city on June 21, with the Final of that competition being on June 28.

They then move to Japan, where they face a Japanese Select XV in Tokyo on Thursday, July 3, before coming up against the Japanese national team on Saturday, July 6.

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