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UPDATE 1-Rugby-England unchanged for Italy clash
February 12, 2015 / 3:57 PM / 3 years ago

UPDATE 1-Rugby-England unchanged for Italy clash

* Lancaster keeps faith with Cardiff victors

* Expects tough test from Italy (Adds quotes)

LONDON, Feb 12 (Reuters) - England have named an unchanged team to face Italy in the Six Nations at Twickenham on Saturday -- sticking with the starting 15 who beat Wales 21-16 in their opener last week.

It means Jonathan Joseph, who scored a try against Wales, and George Kruis will make their first Twickenham starts.

Coach Stuart Lancaster’s replacement bench is also unchanged with Sale fly half Danny Cipriani, who has not featured in a home international since 2008, again one of his backup options.

“It’s always good to be able to name an unchanged team and to build some consistency,” he said.

”We did the same last year after France heading into the Scotland game.

“Italy are going to be fired up. They always are when they come to Twickenham, especially after last week’s loss to Ireland.”

Italy were beaten 26-3 by Ireland.

Lancaster said the selection process was not as easy as it seemed.

“There are a lot of good players who are just on the outside of the squad who probably deserve a chance and are going to have to wait patiently,” he said.

“It was a good performance (against Wales) and I think the players who played in that game deserve to go again. It helps breed consistency. You can learn together and move on together as a group.”

The coach pointed to the laboured 18-11 win over Italy at Twickenham in 2013 as a strong sign that England were in for a tough test again.

”If you don’t get the detail right you find it difficult against them.

”Across the board they will clearly make every element of the game competitive and disrupt as much as possible.

“They are a very strong scrummaging side, excellent at the break down and have an iconic leader in (Sergio) Parisse.”

England: 15-Mike Brown, 14-Anthony Watson, 13-Jonathan Joseph, 12-Luther Burrell, 11-Jonny May, 10-George Ford, 9-Ben Youngs; 8-Billy Vunipola, 7-Chris Robshaw (captain), 6-James Haskell, 5-George Kruis, 4-Dave Attwood, 3-Dan Cole, 2-Dylan Hartley, 1-Joe Marler

Replacements: 16-Tom Youngs, 17-Mako Vunipola, 18-Kieran Brookes, 19-Tom Croft, 20-Nick Easter, 21-Richard Wigglesworth, 22-Danny Cipriani, 23-Billy Twelvetrees (Reporting by Martyn Herman; additional reporting by Justin Palmer; Editing by Ossian Shine and Pritha Sarkar)

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