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6 Nations

Two Uncapped Players in England Squad

England have confirmed their 23-man squad for this Sunday’s Six Nations opener against France, with some positional switches included along with two uncapped players

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(Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

England head coach Eddie Jones has named his 23-man squad to take on France in his team’s Six Nations opening game at the Stade de France this Sunday at 15 00.

As expected Jones has selected captain Owen Farrell at inside-centre, meaning George Ford takes the reins at fly-half. 

While there is a surprise in the back-row with Courtney Lawes shifting to blindside-flanker as Tom Curry starts at No 8. 

Among the squad there are also two uncapped players in George Furbank and Will Stuart, with the former on from the start while the latter takes a place among the bench. 

Elsewhere in the front-row there is plenty of experience with Joe Marler and Kyle Sinckler either side of Saracen’s hooker Jamie George, while Maro Itoje is joined by Charlie Ewels in the second-row. 

As mentioned above Lawes is at blindside-flanker, with Sam Underhill at openside and Curry finishes the pack from No 8. 

Ben Youngs is set for his 96th cap at scrum-half alongside Ford at out-half, and they have Farrell and Manu Tuilagi outside them in the midfield pairing. 

Elliot Daly slots in on the left-wing, with Jonny May on the right, in order to accommodate Furbank at full-back following the injury to Anthony Watson that was confirmed yesterday. 

There is plenty of fire-power on the bench for Jones to call upon if needed with Luke Cowan-Dickie, George Kruis and Jonathan Joseph joining the likes of Stuart among the replacements. 

Speaking ahead of the game Jones admitted he is happy with how his team have prepared and has warned France once more that England will head into the game hoping to blow their opponents away. 

“It has been a massively exciting week for us. It is the start of the Guinness Six Nations, the best rugby tournament in the world. We have had a great preparation in Portugal with a quality training week this week. We have really worried about ourselves, getting ourselves right. We have picked a strong forward pack which is part of the England way and an exciting backline with young George Furbank playing his first Test at fullback. France can expect absolute brutality from England, we are going to go out there to make sure they understand what Test rugby is.It is about being brutal, it is about being physical and it is about dominating the set piece,” he said. 

England head into the tournament as favourites following their run to the Rugby World Cup final last year. However, the young French team they are set to face will be hoping that England’s loss in that final along with the recent Saracen’s scandal will help them pull off a surprise on the opening weekend. 

Check Out the Full 23-Man Squad Below. 

Starting XV:

15 George Furbank (Northampton Saints, uncapped)

14 Jonny May (Leicester Tigers, 52 caps)

13 Manu Tuilagi (Leicester Tigers, 40 caps)

12 Owen Farrell (Saracens, 79 caps) C

11 Elliot Daly (Saracens, 39 caps)

10 George Ford (Leicester Tigers, 65 caps)

9 Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers, 95 caps)

1 Joe Marler (Harlequins, 68 caps)

2 Jamie George (Saracens, 45 caps)

3 Kyle Sinckler (Harlequins, 31 caps)

4 Maro Itoje (Saracens, 34 caps)

5 Charlie Ewels (Bath Rugby, 12 caps)

6 Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints, 81 caps)

7 Sam Underhill (Bath Rugby, 15 caps)

8 Tom Curry (Sale Sharks, 19 caps)

Replacements:

16 Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter Chiefs, 21 caps)

17 Ellis Genge (Leicester Tigers, 14 caps)

18 Will Stuart (Bath Rugby, uncapped)

19 George Kruis (Saracens, 41 caps)

20 Lewis Ludlam (Northampton Saints, 6 caps)

21 Willi Heinz (Gloucester Rugby, 9 caps)

22 Ollie Devoto (Exeter Chiefs, 1 cap)

23 Jonathan Joseph (Bath Rugby, 47 caps)

6 Nations

Cian Healy signs short term extension

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Ireland and Leinster loosehead prop Cian Healy has signed a 1 year extension to his IRFU contract up to the end of the 2021/22 season.

Cian is Ireland’s most capped prop forward having lined out for Ireland on 107 occasions to date. He made his Ireland debut against Australia in November 2009 and was selected for the 2013 British and Irish Lions tour of Australia making two appearances before injury ended his involvement.

Cian has won three Six Nations titles with Ireland and represented Leinster on 226 occasions winning four Heineken Cup titles during his career in blue.

David Nucifora, IRFU Performance Director, commented,

“Cian has been a cornerstone of both the Irish and Leinster packs for over a decade.  He has shown incredible resilience to come back from serious injury and perform at the highest level.  Cian has a lot to contribute to Irish Rugby and we are delighted that he has signed on for another year.”

Cian Healy, commented,

“My drive for success at both Leinster and Ireland is as strong as ever.  I am lucky enough to currently be part to two teams with the same mentality which is special and I look forward to another season of pushing boundaries and achieving our goals.

I’m loving my rugby as much now as I did at the very start of my career and looking forward to having our supporters back in stadia.”

Article from Irish Rugby

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6 Nations

O’Mahony Signs Contract Extension with IRFU

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Ireland and Munster backrow Peter O’Mahony has signed a two year extension to his IRFU contract keeping him at Munster until 2023.

Peter made his Ireland debut in the Six Nations against Italy in 2012 and has gone on to win 74 caps and captain his country on eight occasions.  A Lions tourist in 2017, Peter captained the Lions in the opening Test of the series against New Zealand.

Peter has represented Munster on 141 occasions becoming captain of his province in 2013 at the age of 24.

David Nucifora, IRFU Performance Director, commented,

“Peter has played a leadership role in Munster from an early age and is one of the senior leaders in the national squad.  He is a competitor and passionate about playing for both Ireland and Munster.”

Peter O’Mahony, commented,

“It’s a huge privilege to sign on with the province and country I’ve grown up in and dreamed of playing for. It’s been something I’ve been very open about saying from day one and its very pleasing to be able to continue the journey for two more years.

There’s a huge amount of responsibility that comes with representing both teams and I understand how much pressure there is to deliver silverware, however, I am incredibly enthusiastic on the position and competitiveness of both Munster and Ireland and I look forward to hopefully contributing to both, to succeed in delivering that success on the pitch.”

Irish Rugby

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6 Nations

Sexton extends contract

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(Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)

Ireland and Leinster out-half Johnny Sexton has signed a 1 year extension to his IRFU contract up to the end of the 2021/22 season.

The 2018 World Player of the Year took on the Ireland captaincy in January 2020 and is one of Irish rugby’s most decorated players.

He has been central to both Ireland and Leinster’s success for over a decade following his international debut against Fiji in November 2009.

A two time Lions tourist in 2013 and 2017, Johnny has won three Six Nations titles with Ireland and four European Cups with Leinster.  He has represented his provinces on 171 occasions scoring 1505 points.

David Nucifora, IRFU Performance Director, commented,

“Johnny continues to show he has the quality and appetite to compete at the highest levels.  He is playing an important leadership role with the Ireland squad and his insight and experience continues to be of great value to the group.”

Johnny Sexton, commented,

“I am really enjoying my rugby and I want to keep learning and adding value to both the Ireland and Leinster environments.   I am enjoying the challenge of captaincy and the added responsibility that it brings.  My appetite for success is the same as it ever was and the ambitions of both the Ireland and Leinster squads match my own.”

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