Nowell boost for full-strength England in Argentina clash

Jack Nowell passes the ball during the England training session at Fuchu Asahi Football Park on October 02, 2019 in Tokyo, Japan.
Jack Nowell passes the ball during the England training session at Fuchu Asahi Football Park on October 02, 2019 in Tokyo, Japan.
Image: David Rogers/Getty Images

England coach Eddie Jones has named a full-strength side for Saturday's crunch Pool C encounter with Argentina that could see his team secure a knock-out berth with one game to play.

Jones welcomed back winger Jack Nowell and prop Mako Vunipola from long-term injury into the match-day 23, backing them both to make an impact from the bench.

The coach made nine changes from the team that thrashed the United States 45-7 with only Joe Marler, George Kruis, Tom Curry, Billy Vunipola, George Ford and Elliot Daly keeping their places.

Scrum-half Ben Youngs will win his 92nd cap for his country, overtaking the legendary Jonny Wilkinson and putting him behind just recent captain Dylan Hartley and prop Jason Leonard. If prop Dan Coles comes on from the bench, he will draw level with Youngs.

Jones has again opted for the double playmaker strategy with captain Owen Farrell at inside-centre and George Ford running the show from fly-half.

Up front, marauding number eight Billy Vunipola starts the game alongside Curry and Sam Underhill. With an average age of 24, they are the youngest back row to start a game for England in the professional era.

Maro Itoje and Kruis start in the boiler room in the second row.

Jones said Argentina was "a completely different team from others we have played so far in the pool stages and are always about the physical contest".

"This week it's about getting our game right, our set piece in a good place and making sure defensively we are organised and ready to find ways to score points against them."

England (15-1)

Elliot Daly; Anthony Watson, Manu Tuilagi, Owen Farrell (capt), Jonny May; George Ford, Ben Youngs; Billy Vunipola, Sam Underhill, Tom Curry; George Kruis, Maro Itoje; Kyle Sinckler, Jamie George, Joe Marler: Replacements: Luke Cowan-Dickie, Mako Vunipola, Dan Cole, Courtney Lawes, Lewis Ludlam, Willi Heinz, Henry Slade, Jack Nowell

- AFP

 

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