Jones tweaks his England team for Le Crunch
TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: England head coach Eddie Jones has named his team to face France in their second Six Nations match on Sunday at Twickenham Stadium.
Jones has made two changes to the starting XV that beat Ireland last weekend with Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints) selected in the second row following the injury to Maro Itoje (Saracens) in Dublin.
Chris Ashton (Sale Sharks) is named on the right wing in place of Jack Nowell (Exeter Chiefs) who will be among the finishers on Sunday. It will be Ashton’s first start in the Six Nations since 2013.
Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers), Joe Launchbury (Wasps) and Ben Moon (Exeter Chiefs) are included as replacements for the first time this tournament.
Eddie Jones said: “After the Ireland game we have had to refocus and reset. Players have been very good and certainly by Sunday we’ll be at our best.
“The French are always an interesting side to play against. They are full of talent, they have a lot of unpredictability so it’s hard to prepare tactically against them so we have had a real focus on ourselves.
“It is unfortunate Maro is injured but he has been rehabbing well so we are hopeful he will be back earlier than maybe first predicted. We have got great depth in the squad so Joe Launchbury and Courtney Lawes will fill his shoes very well.
“We have gone for Chris Ashton on the wing; we think he might sneak us a try early in the game. Jack Nowell was brilliant against Ireland and he’ll play a significant role for us off the bench.
“We can’t wait to play in front of our supporters, I’m sure they will be buoyant by the first round results and we promise we will play a better game on Sunday.”
England have won nine of the last 12 Six Nations games against France with the Les Bleus only having managed one win at Twickenham in the Six Nations era back in 2005.
Six Nations: England team vs France
England: 15 Elliot Daly, 14 Chris Ashton, 13 Henry Slade, 12 Manu Tuilagi, 11 Jonny May, 10 Owen Farrell (captain), 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Billy Vunipola, 7 Tom Curry, 6 Mark Wilson, 5 George Kruis, 4 Courtney Lawes, 3 Kyle Sinckler, 2 Jamie George, 1 Mako Vunipola.
Replacements: 16 Luke Cowan-Dickie, 17 Ben Moon, 18 Dan Cole, 19 Joe Launchbury, 20 Nathan Hughes, 21 Dan Robson, 22 George Ford, 23 Jack Nowell.
Date: Sunday, February 10
Venue: Twickenham, London
Kick-off: 15.00 (16.00 French time; 15.00 GMT)
Referee: Nigel Owens (Wales)
Assistant referees: Andrew Brace (Ireland), Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand)
TMO: Glenn Newman (New Zealand)
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