Te'o and Care start for England against Italy

Fri, 24 Feb 2017 10:35
Large ben te o england try 2017 800

TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Ben Te'o is poised for his full debut, with Danny Care recalled to the starting side, as England coach Eddie Jones rang the changes for Sunday's Six Nations international against Italy at Twickenham.

Jones had promised something of a shake-up after defending champions England kept alive their hopes of back-to-back Grand Slams with a 21-16 win over Wales in Cardiff earlier this month.

New Zealand-born former Rugby League favourite Te'o, who has impressed off the bench this tournament, will start in midfield alongside Owen Farrell, who will win his 50th cap this weekend.

Elliot Daly - who scored the late match-winning try against Wales - remains on the wing after speculation he might have been moved to a centre berth, with George Ford staying at flyhalf. 

Scrumhalf Care, who has only made two starts under Australian boss Jones - yet to lose a match as England coach - comes off the bench, with regular No.9 Ben Youngs among the replacements.

There were two other changes to England's XV announced Friday.

Jonny May returned to the right wing in place of Anthony Watson, with flank James Haskell given a starting position in the back row.

On the bench, prop Mako Vunipola was selected for his first Test of 2017 after recovering from a knee injury.

Dylan Hartley remained captain despite the fine recent form of reserve hooker Jamie George

England, who are on a 16-match winning streak, have never lost to Italy and the Azzurri arrive in London on the back of a 10-63 thrashing by Ireland last time out.

England: 15 Mike Brown, 14 Jonny May, 13 Ben Te'o, 12 Owen Farrell, 11 Elliot Daly, 10 George Ford, 9 Danny Care, 8 Nathan Hughes, 7 James Haskell, 6 Maro Itoje, 5 Courtney Lawes, 4 Joe Launchbury, 3 Dan Cole, 2 Dylan Hartley (captain), 1 Joe Marler.
Replacements: 16 Jamie George, 17 Mako Vunipola, 18 Kyle Sinckler, 19 Tom Wood, 20 Jack Clifford, 21 Ben Youngs, 22 Henry Slade, 23 Jack Nowell.

Date: Sunday, February 26
Venue: Twickenham, London
Kick-off: 15.00 (16.00 CET; 15.00 GMT))
Referee: Romain Poite (France)
Assistant referees: Mathieu Raynal (France), Andrew Brace (Ireland)
TMO: George Ayoub (Australia)

Agence France-Presse

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Team P W D L Pts
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Ireland 0 0 0 0 0
France 0 0 0 0 0
Scotland 0 0 0 0 0
Wales 0 0 0 0 0
Italy 0 0 0 0 0