Autumn Internationals 2018: England Squad to Play New Zealand

England Rugby

Eddie Jones has retained 25 players to continue England’s preparation for their second Test of the Quilter Internationals against New Zealand at Twickenham Stadium on Saturday.

Tom Curry (Sale Sharks) will remain in camp while his ankle is assessed further.

The Harlequins pair Joe Marchant and Nathan Earle will train with the squad tomorrow before being released back to their club. Alex Lozowski (Saracens) will also stay in camp until later in the week.

Forwards
Charlie Ewels (Bath Rugby)
Jamie George (Saracens)
Dylan Hartley (Northampton Saints) co-captain
Alec Hepburn (Exeter Chiefs)
Maro Itoje (Saracens)
George Kruis (Saracens)
Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints)
Zach Mercer (Bath Rugby)
Ben Moon (Exeter Chiefs)
Brad Shields (Wasps)
Kyle Sinckler (Harlequins)
Sam Underhill (Bath Rugby)
Harry Williams (Exeter Chiefs)
Mark Wilson (Newcastle Falcons)

Backs
Chris Ashton (Sale Sharks)
Danny Care (Harlequins)
Elliot Daly (Wasps)
Owen Farrell (Saracens) co-captain
George Ford (Leicester Tigers)
Jonny May (Leicester Tigers)
Jack Nowell (Exeter Chiefs)
Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs)
Ben Te’o (Worcester Warriors)
Manu Tuilagi (Leicester Tigers)
Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers)

24 thoughts on “Autumn Internationals 2018: England Squad to Play New Zealand

  1. Underhill to start I reckon, big call is whether to get Mercer into the side at the expense of shields, think Eddie will be tempted to stick with the starting XV as they do have precious game minutes. Lawes to take Ewels place on the bench if fit. I really think the centres will have to step up or the ford Farrell combo will return.




    0
    1. Looks like a straight swap Underhill for Curry doesn’t it?
      Think EJ will stick with Shields, and I would too. He had a decent game and he’ll playing against people whose game he knows well. Mercer looks like he will bea great bench option.
      As you say, Lawes in for Ewels and I hope we’ll see Moon and Williams starting with Hepburn and Sinckler on the bench – although I imagine at most EJ may swap Hepburn and Moon.
      As for the centres, Te’o needs to start the way he finished last week and this really has to be the last chance saloon for Slade.
      I am worried about Daly at fullback – Barrett is a superbly accurate kicker, the Kiwi wingers are great in the air and as we’ve seen Daly is not confident under the high ball. A mistake to leave Brown out I think




      3
      1. Last chance saloon? I thought Slade had a reasonably good game on Saturday, and with limited ball too. Made at least one crucial defensive call (with the missed intercept). He’s still worth the patience if he can eventually replicate his Chiefs form in an England shirt, imo.




        1
        1. Yeah. I really like Slade and think he has the ability but he’s not shown it during his 14 caps.
          I appreciate the games he’s played may not have suited him (having Ford and Farrell inside him) but at some point you have to call it and say it’s not working.
          He was ok last week and as you point out did make a crucial call. But and it’s a big but – he missed 7 out of 13 tackles and was therefore a big part of why De Allende made so much ground through the mid-field.
          I think he needs to show a vast improvement on that or SBW/Crotty/Goodhue/Lienert-Brown will have a field day – and if they do, they wonlt be missing scoring chances like SA did




          3
          1. Re: his defence stats, they’re definitely not good, but he’s nowhere near as flakey in Chiefs colours. Why is that? Point being, no matter who goes into 13, if there’s some dubious tackle-height teaching going on in the England changing room, it won’t just be Slade who looks bad on the stats sheet.




            0
            1. Good point – but I’d say that international is a big step up from Chiefs games and perhaps his defence isn’t ready for that step.
              Maybe its an England coaching problem but at this level, if its clear that going high on someone isn’t working, I’d expect the player to have the nous to change and go low.
              Anyway, let’s see if he can change it around this weekend. I hope he can – as I said, I think he has the skills and would really like to see him prove his ability on the international stage




              2
            2. According to ESPN Scrum, Slade had the worst tackle completion % of any player of played that game, missing more tackles than he made.
              I can’t imagine the coaches spend too much time on tackle technique during the camps, this is a fundamental that the players should already know.




              0
          2. It’s all well and good making the excuse that he’s not played games that have suited him, or only really played outside Ford and Farrell, but those are the circumstances JJ, Teo et al. have had to play under as well. Slade has had ample chances to show he can cut it at international and so far he hasn’t really taken them.
            Saturday was better and he showed a couple of nice touches. The backs didnt really get the ball much first half so it would be unfair to judge too harshly. When Farrell was injured briefly in the second Slade did also step in at first receiver. Whether he can improve defensively or really influence a game at international level is yet to be seen.




            0
            1. Agree with all of that although would point out that Te’o and Joseph are different type of players, so would react to circumstances differently.
              Personally I’d like to see what Daly can do from 13 and would have Slade on the bench covering fly half and centre




              3
    2. Who’s the back 3 carrier? Didn’t see Ben Morgan’s name in the squad. Also, won’t Jones have to ‘prop’ up the scrum? Hepburn went backwards @ the rate of a perceived Italian WW II tank with 5 reverse gears. Regarding Ford’s intro, wouldn’t this mean that things ain’t working? The timing of same will need to be right, as it could come after the horses have bolted. Also, there’s no guarantee that this would work anyway, otherwise surely the discarded Ford would have started?




      2
      1. Although it would be wrong to simply discard Hepburn, I’m a tad surprised that someone like Nathan Catt hasn’t been included. Not that he’s a prolific carrier but he would offer more ballast and experience at scrum time, given that Moon will be replaced around the 55 minute mark. (If selected to start). Mercer surprised me last wk end. He was quick ,tackled well and wasn’t phased by the big Saffer pack. I still think we lack a bit of carrying oomph though.




        0
  2. I think he will stay with the same team that beat the Boks apart from perhaps Manu and Courtney coming in to the bench spots.

    I would prefer to see Shields dropped to the bench with Wilson moving to 6 and Mercer taking up the 8 role.

    I am also starting to doubt Daly at full back. He is a superb player with all the credentials to be a good full back but I am worried about his fragility under the high ball. The kiwis will look to exploit that no doubt.

    Dispite his detractors, Brown is solid as a rock and I would feel slightly less worried if he was wearing the 15 shirt and Daly was moved back to the wing.




    2
  3. I am not sure what Alex Goode has to do to persuade EJ that he is worthy of a place in the squad. He is surely a better option at FB than Daley who should be playing at 13.




    4
  4. Starting 15 – Power game for 45-50 and then bring on the ball players…

    Forwards
    Jamie George (Saracens)
    Maro Itoje (Saracens)
    Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints)
    Zach Mercer (Bath Rugby)
    Ben Moon (Exeter Chiefs)
    Sam Underhill (Bath Rugby)
    Harry Williams (Exeter Chiefs)
    Mark Wilson (Newcastle Falcons)

    Backs
    Elliot Daly (Wasps)
    Owen Farrell (Saracens) co-captain
    Jonny May (Leicester Tigers)
    Jack Nowell (Exeter Chiefs)
    Ben Te’o (Worcester Warriors)
    Manu Tuilagi (Leicester Tigers)
    Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers)




    0
    1. JIMP, ok. Presume Metcer’s @ 8, Wilson @ 6? Are you sure of George’s line out throws? Hartley hits his. Also who is the other co-captain? In midfield do you foresee Teo & Tui bashing through NZ? Where’s the guile? And with Daly @ the back it could leave England exposed again. Apart from that, yr team looks tickerty boo!




      0
      1. You presume correctly re back row, George is a better scrummager and was the lions test hooker V the Abs… That counts big time… As for the guile, that come on after 55 mins with slade et Al… But, don’t underestimate the gain line skills of mercer, plus the gaps left for the pacey may and daly after teo and manu absorbs multiple defenders at the gainline




        0
        1. Jimp, mmm, a maybe with George. I recall how he blew ‘That’ (last) line out v Ireland in the 6N, ensuring England lost it. After 55, the game’s maturity may have already settled the result. NZ too are used to absorbing ‘multiple defenders on the gain line’. They are also @ nr full strength in their back row v a novice English back 3, Mercer notwithstanding. They tend to not to leave many gaps for the likes of the pacey ‘May & Daly’ to run through, more so after the 2 games v SA. So, we ‘ll see.




          1
  5. Jones has never played Daly in his best position 13.He is way ahead of Slade.Bring back Brown or give Goode a run who are both better 15’s than Daly.This to me is entirely sensible and obvious.
    I am totally unconvinced by Shields when we have Armand and Ewers available to name but 2-or move Wilson to 6 and play Mercer at 8-both In their club position.
    I am not sure we fully understand how far the Boks were from the side that was 1-1 with NZ.In the cold light of day England are a very very average side.




    3
    1. Harlequin, the Boks had de Klerk, Le Roux & Louw missing. Officials, via Farrell, who didn’t miss, saved yr ‘v v average’ bacon?




      0

Leave a Reply