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England U20s name team for France JWC opener

04 June 2013

  • Starting team announced for opening game of Junior World Championships in France
  • Harlequins No. 8 Jack Clifford named as captain
England Under 20s captain Jack Clifford with his French rival

Photo: Getty Images

England Under 20 have named their side for the opening game of the IRB Junior World Championship against France at the Stade Henri Desgrange in La Roche-sur-Yon, live on Sky Sports HD, kick off 5.45pm (GMT).

Harlequins No. 8 Jack Clifford captains the squad and is joined in the back row by David Sisi (Bath Rugby) and debutant Matt Hankin (Saracens).

Twenty-one members of the match day squad have previous Under 20 experience with Hankin and Tom Smallbone (London Irish) the two uncapped players.

Sam Hill, Henry Slade, Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter Chiefs), Alec Hepburn, Nathan Moris (London Wasps), Dominic Barrow (Leeds Carnegie), Sisi and Clifford have previous JWC experience, having played in the 2012 tournament in South Africa.

Head coach Nick Walshe said: “It’s a massive challenge playing against France, particularly in France, but it’s a challenge we’re relishing. We obviously played them in the Six Nations and put in a good performance, but this is a different game – we won’t be complacent, we’ll be treating them with the respect they deserve.

“The lads have trained well for the first couple of days – they’re looking good but to be honest they just want to get out there and play.”

England Under 20 starting XV to play France

15 Ollie Devoto (Bath Rugby)
14 Anthony Watson (Bath Rugby)
13 Harry Sloane (Harlequins)
12 Sam Hill (Exeter Chiefs)
11 Ben Howard (Worcester Warriors)
10 Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs)
9 Callum Braley (Bristol Rugby)

1 Alec Hepburn (London Wasps)
2 Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter Chiefs)
3 Scott Wilson (Newcastle Falcons)
4 Elliott Stooke (Gloucester Rugby)
5 Dominic Barrow (Leeds Carnegie)
6 David Sisi (Bath Rugby)
7 Matt Hankin (Saracens)
8 Jack Clifford (Harlequins) (c)

Replacements:

16 Nathan Morris (London Wasps)
17 Danny Hobbs-Awoyemi (Northampton Saints)
18 Tom Smallbone (London Irish)
19 Tom Price (Leicester Tigers)
20 Ross Moriarty (Gloucester Rugby)
21 Alex Day (Northampton Saints)
22 Henry Purdy (Leicester Tigers)
23 Jack Nowell (Exeter Chiefs)

IRB Junior World Championship schedule
All games live on Sky Sports HD

Game 1: 
England v France
Wednesday, June 5, 17:45 (GMT), 
Stade Henri Desgrange, La Roche sur Yon

Game 2
: England v South Africa 
Sunday, June 9, 15:45 (GMT)
, Stade Henri Desgrange, La Roche sur Yon

Game 3
: England v USA
Thursday, June 13, 17:45 (GMT), 
Stade Henri Desgrange, La Roche sur Yon

Semi-final: 
Tuesday, June 18

Final: Sunday, June 23