Lancaster opts for Twelvetrees

Fri, 08 Feb 2013 11:20
Large billytwelvetreesenglandtraining4 Large james haskell eng training Large manu tuilagi eng runs 630

Billy Twelvetrees has retained his place in the England side that will face Ireland in the Six Nations in Dublin on Sunday after seeing off a challenge from Manu Tuilagi.

Billy Twelvetrees has retained his place in the England side that will face Ireland in the Six Nations in Dublin on Sunday after seeing off a challenge from Manu Tuilagi.

The only change to the team that started the tournament-opening 38-18 win over Scotland last week was the return of James Haskell at blindside flank in a back row that had to be revamped by England head coach Stuart Lancaster after No.8 Ben Morgan suffered an ankle injury at Twickenham.

Gloucester centre Twelvetrees made a try-scoring Test debut last Saturday after replacing the then-injured Tuilagi, who missed the Calcutta Cup clash with an ankle problem.

But with Tuilagi now fit and England's 2003 World Cup-winning coach Clive Woodward among those saying he should start against Ireland, there was intense speculation about how Lancaster would resolve his midfield conundrum.

Friday saw Lancaster stand by the ball-playing Twelvetrees and defensive rock Brad Barritt as his starting centre combination, with the powerful Tuilagi poised to make an impact off the bench.

For Haskell, Sunday's match will be his first Six Nations start in nearly two years, with Tom Morgan moving across the back row to take Morgan's place at No 8 and England captain Chris Robshaw still at openside flank.

Haskell's last Six Nations start was also in Dublin, when England won the title but saw their 2011 Grand Slam ambitions obliterated with a 24-8 defeat by Ireland at Lansdowne Road.

The 27-year-old missed last season's Championship in order to play club rugby in Japan but has since returned to Premiership side Wasps and re-established himself in the England set-up.

Ireland, who also started this Six Nations with a victory by beating defending Grand Slam champions Wales 30-22 in Cardiff last week, were due to announce their side later on Friday.

England have not won a Six Nations match in Dublin since 2003, which was also the last year they completed a Grand Slam.
 
England: 15 Alex Goode, 14 Chris Ashton, 13 Brad Barritt, 12 Billy Twelvetrees, 11 Mike Brown, 10 Owen Farrell, 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Tom Wood, 7 Chris Robshaw (captain), 6 James Haskell, 5 Geoff Parling, 4 Joe Launchbury, 3 Dan Cole, 2 Tom Youngs, 1 Joe Marler.
Replacements: 16 Dylan Hartley, 17 David Wilson, 18 Mako Vunipola, 19 Courtney Lawes 20 Thomas Waldrom, 21 Danny Care, 22 Toby Flood, 23 Manu Tuilagi.

Date: Sunday, February 10
Venue: Aviva Stadium, Dublin
Referee: Jérôme Garces (France)
Assistant referees: Nigel Owens (Wales), Pascal Gauzere (France)
TMO: Iain Ramage (Scotland)

AFP

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 24 February 2017
Highlanders v Chiefs 06h35 Dunedin
Reds v Sharks 09h00 Brisbane
Harlequins v Leicester Tigers 17h45 Twickenham Stoop
Edinburgh v Cardiff Blues 19h05 Myreside
Dragons v Leinster 19h30 Rodney Parade
Munster v Scarlets 19h35 Thomond Park
Sat, 25 February 2017
Sunwolves v Hurricanes 04h15 Tokyo
Crusaders v Brumbies 06h35 Christchurch
Waratahs v Force 08h45 Allianz Park
Saracens v Sale Sharks 12h45 Allianz Park
Northampton Saints v Worcester Warriors 13h00 Franklin's Gardens
Exeter Chiefs v Newcastle Falcons 13h00 Sandy Park
Cheetahs v Lions 13h05 Bloemfontein
Scotland v Wales 14h25 BT Murrayfield
Kings v Jaguares 15h15 Port Elizabeth
Ireland v France 16h50 Aviva Stadium
Stormers v Bulls 17h30 Cape Town
Sun, 26 February 2017
Bristol v Bath 11h00 Ashton Gate
Treviso v Connacht 12h30 Stadio Comunale di Monigo
Wasps v Gloucester 12h30 Ricoh Arena
Zebre v Ulster 12h30 Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
Ospreys v Glasgow Warriors 13h05 Liberty Stadium
England v Italy 15h00 Twickenham Stadium
Mon, 27 February 2017
UCT-Ikeys v Maties 14h45 Cape Town
CUT-Ixias v UJ 16h30 Bloemfontein
Rhodes v Fort Hare 16h30 Grahamstown
CPUT v UKZN-Impi 16h30 Cape Town
UWC v TUT 16h30 Cape Town
UP-Tuks v Wits 16h30 Pretoria
Shimlas v NWU-Pukke 17h00 Bloemfontein
Thu, 02 March 2017
Force v Reds 10h30 Perth
RESULT SCORE
Thu, 23 February 2017
Rebels v Blues 18 | 56
Tue, 21 February 2017
CUT-Ixias v Shimlas 13 | 22
Mon, 20 February 2017
UJ v UP-Tuks 18 | 11
UKZN-Impi v Fort Hare 16 | 10
Maties v NMMU-Madibaz 35 | 16
UWC v Rhodes 88 | 8
TUT v WSU 13 | 17
NWU-Pukke v UCT-Ikeys 20 | 15
Sun, 19 February 2017
Newcastle Falcons v Northampton Saints 46 | 31
Sale Sharks v Wasps 34 | 28
Sat, 18 February 2017
Connacht v Dragons 14 | 9
Ospreys v Munster 23 | 25
Leicester Tigers v Bristol 50 | 17
Ulster v Glasgow Warriors 37 | 17
Bath v Harlequins 22 | 12
SIX NATIONS
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
England 2 2 0 0 8
Ireland 2 1 0 1 6
Wales 2 1 0 1 5
France 2 1 0 1 5
Scotland 2 1 0 1 5
Italy 2 0 0 2 0