Borthwick Named Team To Play Italy At Stadio Olimpico On Saturday


Head coach Steve Borthwick has named his team to play Italy at Stadio Olimpico on Saturday at 16:15 (SA Time).

Ethan Roots of Exeter Chiefs and Fraser Dingwall of Northampton Saints will make their Test debuts after being named to start at blindside flanker and inside centre respectively, whilst a further three uncapped players have been chosen as replacements: Chandler Cunningham-South, Fin Smith and Immanuel Feyi-Waboso.

"After an excellent week’s preparation in Girona, we look forward to the challenge of playing Italy in Rome. The Azzurri are a dangerous team, with some talented ball carriers and players who like to find space. We’ll need to make good decisions, keep our discipline, and maintain a level of intensity to our performance from the first whistle to the last."

"Winning a first cap for your country is always a very special occasion. We’re delighted for the debutants who have all worked incredibly hard to get themselves selected in the 23 to face Italy. I know Saturday will be a very proud moment for the players and their families. My message to them this week has been to be themselves, to grasp their opportunity, and to play with the strengths and skills that deservedly got them selected to a strong Six Nations squad."

England: 15. Freddie Steward (Leicester Tigers, 31 caps), 14. Tommy Freeman (Northampton Saints, 3 caps), 13. Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs, 57 caps), 12. Fraser Dingwall (Northampton Saints, uncapped), 11. Elliot Daly (Saracens, 64 caps), 10. George Ford (Sale Sharks, 91 caps) – vice-captain, 9. Alex Mitchell (Northampton Saints, 11 caps), 1. Joe Marler (Harlequins, 88 caps), 2. Jamie George (Saracens, 85 caps) – captain, 3. Will Stuart (Bath Rugby, 33 caps), 4. Maro Itoje (Saracens, 76 caps) – vice-captain, 5. Ollie Chessum (Leicester Tigers, 18 caps), 6. Ethan Roots (Exeter Chiefs, uncapped), 7. Sam Underhill (Bath Rugby, 30 caps), 8. Ben Earl (Saracens, 25 caps). Replacements: 16. Theo Dan (Saracens, 7 caps), 17. Ellis Genge (Bristol Bears, 58 caps) – vice-captain, 18. Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers, 107 caps), 19. Alex Coles (Northampton Saints, 3 caps), 20. Chandler Cunningham-South (Harlequins, uncapped), 21. Danny Care (Harlequins, 96 caps), 22. Fin Smith (Northampton Saints, uncapped), 23. Immanuel Feyi-Waboso (Exeter Chiefs, uncapped).