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Hunter leads Red Roses against Wales

Loughborough Lightning’s Sarah Hunter returns to captain England as they take on Wales in the Summer Nations Series on Wednesday, with club teammates Emily Scarratt, Helena Rowland and Morwenna Talling also named in the matchday 23.

134-time international Hunter will lead the Red Roses from No.8 at Ashton Gate, while Scarratt retains her place in the midfield to vice-captain the side alongside fellow centre Rowland, and Talling is named amongst Simon Middleton’s replacements. 

Middleton said: “There were some really strong periods of play against the USA and we are looking to build further on that in this second game against Wales.

“We are looking forward to our match at Ashton Gate in our final fixture before departing for New Zealand.

“We always said we’d work with a number of players across the two matches and that’s what we’ve done. This is another opportunity for players to perform and show what they can do. This game is about building form, synergy and confidence.

“It’s been a poignant and significant week for the nation. We as a Red Roses player and staff group are privileged to have the chance to pay our respects to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II at this fixture and to acknowledge her 70 years of duty. It’s fitting this fixture falls against Wales and I’m sure Ioan and his staff will, like us, want to put on a performance that would have made Her Majesty proud in front of a British crowd.”

England matchday squad to play Wales

15 Ellie Kildunne (Harlequins, 24 caps)
14 Lydia Thompson (University of Worcester Warriors, 53 caps)
13 Emily Scarratt (VC; Loughborough Lightning, 102 caps)
12 Helena Rowland (Loughborough Lightning, 16 caps)

11 Sarah McKenna (Saracens, 41 caps)
10 Zoe Harrison (Saracens, 39 caps)
9 Lucy Packer (Harlequins, 4 caps)

1 Vickii Cornborough (Harlequins, 69 caps)
2 Lark Davies (Bristol Bears, 40 caps)
3 Sarah Bern (Bristol Bears, 45 caps)
4 Zoe Aldcroft (Gloucester-Hartpury, 31 caps)
5 Abbie Ward (Bristol Bears, 55 caps)
6 Alex Matthews (Gloucester-Hartpury, 50 caps)
7 Marlie Packer (Saracens, 83 caps)
8 Sarah Hunter (C; Loughborough Lightning, 134 caps)

Replacements:
16 Amy Cokayne (Harlequins, 63 caps)
17 Hannah Botterman (Saracens, 29 caps)
18 Maud Muir (Gloucester-Hartpury, 10 caps)
19 Morwenna Talling (Loughborough Lightning, 4 caps)
20 Poppy Cleall (Saracens, 56 caps)
21 Claudia MacDonald (Exeter Chiefs, 19 caps)
22 Amber Reed (Bristol Bears, 61 caps)
23 Holly Aitchison (Saracens, 9 caps)

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