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Purdy to captain England Women against South Africa

02 August 2013

  • England Women name side to take South Africa
  • Claire Purdy to captain Graham Smith's side
Claire Purdy

Photo: Getty Images 

England Women have named their side to take on South Africa in their second Nations Cup game in Colorado on Saturday, kick off 11pm GMT.

Prop Claire Purdy will captain the side and there are three debutants in Leanne Riley, Amy Wilson-Hardy and Kate Hancock.

Acting Head Coach Graham Smith’s side fell to a narrow 28-25 loss against Canada in their opening game, but he says that his players are ready to take on South Africa.

He said: “We had some honest conversations with the players after the Canada game and the key factors to the loss were our attention to detail and errors in our one-on-one defence, which we have worked to address in training.

“The focus of this tour is to develop individuals and give opportunities and the changes in selection reflect this. The three new caps in the backs have shown real quality in training and have the opportunity to replicate this in their first full international game.

“Playing England always brings out the best in our opposition. The South African performance against USA was very strong – they are physical and have some real game breakers. They have a deep-rooted rugby heritage and the nature of South African rugby is physical and competitive and this game on Saturday will be no different.”

England Women starting XV to play South Africa

15 Kate Hancock 14 Georgina Roberts 13 Amy Wilson–Hardy 12 Lauren Cattell 11 Leanne Riley 10 Emily Scott 9 Charlotte Keane 1 Claire Purdy (c) 2 Mercedes Foy 3 Justine Lucas 4 Rebecca Essex 5 Zoe Saynor 6 Fiona Fletcher 7 Victoria Fleetwood 8 Harriet Millar Mills

Replacements:

16 Emma Croker 17 Rochelle Clark 18 Laura Keates 19 Isabelle Noel-Smith 20 Sarah Hunter 21 Fiona Davidson 22 Ceri Large 23 Kay Wilson