RWC 2019 Warm-ups: England Team to Play Wales

England men’s head coach Eddie Jones has named his team to play Wales in their first Quilter International of the season at Twickenham Stadium on Sunday 11 August, KO 2pm.

George Ford (Leicester Tigers) will captain England with 377 caps in the starting XV which includes two debutants.

Gloucester Rugby’s Willi Heinz is named at scrum half and Ruaridh McConnochie (Bath Rugby) is set to start on the right wing. Heinz and Sam Underhill (Bath Rugby), who will wear the number 7 shirt, are named as vice captains.

Anthony Watson will play on the left wing in his first Test since March 2018 following long-term injury. Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter Chiefs) is named at hooker and will make his first start in 12 matches for England.

“We have completed our four weeks of pre-season training and now we have moved into four weeks of warm up games ahead of the Rugby World Cup,” said Jones.

“Our focus has now changed to match preparation and fitness and creating a game that will stand up to the rigours of the tournament where we have to win seven games in sevens weeks.”

Three uncapped players Lewis Ludlam (Northampton Saints), Joe Marchant (Harlequins) and Jack Singleton (Saracens) are named as finishers.

Jones added: “Our team selection and tactics in our next four games are all about developing a team capable of winning in Japan and our overarching target of being ready when we get on the plane on the 8th of September to win the World Cup.”

“We are looking forward to playing at Twickenham and giving the home crowd something to smile about.”

Captain Ford said: “This week we have had some great prep coming off the back of a great 12 days in Treviso where we did a lot of hard work in the heat and in the humidity out there.

“To get back here and have a game at the end of the week is great and we have turned our focus to tactically how we want to play the game, what we want to look like defensively and how we want to play with the ball in hand as well. We want to be adaptable and we keep on challenging ourselves in training to do that.”

England starting XV
15 Elliot Daly (Saracens, 30 caps)
14 Ruaridh McConnochie (Bath Rugby, uncapped)
13 Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs, 22 caps)
12 Piers Francis (Northampton Saints, 4 caps)
11 Anthony Watson (Bath Rugby, 33 caps)
10 George Ford (Leicester Tigers, 55 caps) C
9 Willi Heinz (Gloucester Rugby, uncapped) VC
1 Ellis Genge (Leicester Tigers, 9 caps)
2 Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter Chiefs, 11 caps)
3 Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers, 85 caps)
4 Joe Launchbury (Wasps, 58 caps)
5 Charlie Ewels (Bath Rugby, 10 caps)
6 Tom Curry (Sale Sharks, 10 caps)
7 Sam Underhill (Bath Rugby, 9 caps) VC
8 Billy Vunipola (Saracens, 41 caps)

Finishers
16 Jack Singleton (Saracens, uncapped)
17 Joe Marler (Harlequins, 59 caps)
18 Harry Williams (Exeter Chiefs, 17 caps)
19 George Kruis (Saracens, 32 caps)
20 Lewis Ludlam (Northampton Saints, uncapped)
21 Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers, 85 caps)
22 Joe Marchant (Harlequins, uncapped)
23 Joe Cokanasiga (Bath Rugby, 4 caps)

16 thoughts on “RWC 2019 Warm-ups: England Team to Play Wales

  1. Experimenting to this extent, with this many uncapped players, four games from a World Cup…Piers Francis inexplicably involved…

    The mind boggles.

    Maybe Eddie’s a true genius and we’ll all marvel when he win the WC. More likely we’ll witness a wasted opportunity and I hope he’s held to account for it.




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  2. Experimenting, or blending likely squad players with the cast offs with a view to gaining match time whilst limiting injuries? With the exception of Francis, who I’d wager is his last chance saloon.

    I suspect the second test will see a rotation i.e. George over Cowan Dickie, Farrell over Ford, again for match time whilst mitigating the injury risk.




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  3. So very experimental, the only bolters I would say are Billy and Daly, all the others have either potential to start Curry, Lauchbury, Cole, Watson, Ford, Slade or given a run through, interested to see the Wales line up.

    Not a fan of Piers Francis, the centre paring look a bit light in defence, wondering if the stronger side(s) will be for the away games?




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  4. I am looking forward to seeing this team play.

    Pros
    The back row excites me
    Watson is back
    Marchant and Coka off the bench
    Genge angry and out to prove a point

    Cons
    Francis – is he a genuine world cup starter or a wasted cap? would have preferred to see Marchant starting
    Heinz – where has he come from and how is he suddenly VC (points at an alarming lack of planning by EJ).




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  5. Having looked at the Wales line up I think the likes of Wyn Jones, Owens and Moriarty will be excited about running at a midfield of Francis and Slade!! Slade is a relatively solid defender, but Francis!?!?!?!? I certainly can’t see where our penetration is going to come from in this midfield. Is this going to be another tactic of kicking the ball through and chasing? If so, Eddie will be putting a lot on the shoulders of Captain Ford!!! At least with Farrell outside him we have the option of a more robust physical 12, but Francis is neither, in attack or defence? I can see Marchant (hopefully) coming off the bench early and making a good impression.




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  6. I guess EJ is running the rule over the last few places and the top reserves.

    As for Willi Heinz – he did have a really good season last year. Very experienced scrum half and player which is why he is VC for this game. Not sure anyone else is really a standout to be given responsibility. Launchbury, Slade or Daly perhaps. Not sure about Ewels, but not sure about anyone else.




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  7. I despair. Four games out from a WC and Eddie is screwing about as if he has no idea at all who should be in the squad. Wales by 20 points and a miserable evening fielding pointed banter from Welshmen awaits!




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  8. Actually an interesting team. More so if it had been picked some 18 mths or so back though. It’s like Eddie’s a piano accordion player who’s playing all his notes into his tune’s last squeeze.. or nearly last. He’s got 4 more left in fact. Anyway, could go over & over his selections like a nun’s knickers, but I’m too pooped to push more shizen up hill with a tooth pick. Threfore I’ll limit it to asking whether it wouldn’t have made more sense to have swapped Daly & Watson over?




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  9. The only positives e for me are Watsons return, although think he is a better fb than Daly so would rather see them switched, and the backrow of Underhill and Curry together.. I think this has genuine potential to be 1st choice. Too many concerns to mention, i just don’t understand EJ I fear




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    1. Wouldn’t worry too much SD. Once had a girlfriend like Eddie. Looked the part & talked a convincing game, but proved to be Inconsistent, erratic & contradictory. Didn’t last. I couldn’t stick to the game plan.. whatever it was! Shame, because apart from all that.. was good value.




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    2. Goode and Brown are both better full backs than either of them Stuart, but the press and public like them and EJ just loves to be contrary.




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  10. So Slade, Underhill and McConnochie are all injured and Ludlam, Joe and Joseph take their places. Have zero belief that Ludlam is an international player but hope I am wrong. Would rather see what Marchant can offer .than see yet more of Joseph.
    Some people are reporting that Te’o and Brown are out this week because they had a row during a bonding session! Personally I have every sympathy for players losing it during a fake bonding exercise and it’s hard to.see Brown enjoying them.
    Does that mean they are only out temporarily?! Seems possible. Please can we are the back.of Francis soon!




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