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England Call On Itoje And Marler

England Call On Itoje And Marler

Maro Itoje will make his first start for England after being named in the team to face Ireland at Twickenham on Saturday evening (kick-off 4.50pm).

England head coach Eddie Jones has made two changes to his starting line-up for the RBS 6 Nations game, with Saracens lock Maro Itoje replacing Courtney Lawes and loosehead prop Joe Marler being preferred to Mako Vunipola.

Lawes is named as a replacement having coming into the squad for injured Wasps forward Joe Launchbury.

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“Joe Launchbury is unlucky to miss out through injury; Maro Itoje is selected as result and we’re pleased for him,” said Australian Jones.

“Joe Marler made a big impact off the bench in Rome and will start the game with Mako Vunipola finishing the match.”

Wasps centre Elliot Daly is also named among the replacements and is in line for his debut with Jones reverting back to a 5-3 split on the bench.

“Elliot Daly has worked hard this week and is now ready for a place in the 23. He can provide cover in several positions in the back line,” he added.

Scrum half Ben Youngs keeps his place ahead of Danny Care and England will be led by hooker Dylan Hartley with Marler and Dan Cole completing the front row.

England have won their opening two fixtures in the tournament and Jones is expecting a stern test from the back-to-back champions.

“Playing our first game at Twickenham after two away fixtures will be huge for us. We’re determined to put in a strong performance against a clever Irish side who are the benchmark of European rugby.”

Chris Robshaw, James Haskell and Billy Vunipola again form the back row, while George Ford and Owen Farrell continue their partnership at out-half and inside centre respectively.

ENGLAND Team & Replacements (v Ireland, 2016 RBS 6 Nations Championship, Twickenham, Saturday, February 27, kick-off 4.50pm):

15. Mike Brown (Harlequins)
14. Anthony Watson (Bath)
13. Jonathan Joseph (Bath)
12. Owen Farrell (Saracens)
11. Jack Nowell (Exeter Chiefs)
10. George Ford (Bath)
9. Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers)
1. Joe Marler (Harlequins)
2. Dylan Hartley (Northampton Saints) (capt)
3. Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers)
4. Maro Itoje (Saracens)
5. George Kruis (Saracens)
6. Chris Robshaw (Harlequins)
7. James Haskell (Wasps)
8. Billy Vunipola (Saracens)


16. Jamie George (Saracens)
17. Mako Vunipola (Saracens) 
18. Paul Hill (Northampton Saints)
19. Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints)
20. Jack Clifford (Harlequins)
21. Danny Care (Harlequins)
22. Elliot Daly (Wasps)
23. Alex Goode (Saracens)