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Courtney Lawes in action for Northampton Saints
Claire Jones / RedHatPhoto.com
International

Lawes to start for England against Italy on Saturday

Northampton Saints’ Courtney Lawes is set to start his 87th Test match for England this weekend after Eddie Jones named his team to play Italy in the Six Nations.

The Red Rose will host Italy at Twickenham Stadium on Saturday 13 February (2.15pm KO), with Lawes promoted to blindside flanker in the starting XV after coming off the bench against Scotland last time out. 

Jones said: “As always, we’ve picked what we think is our strongest 23 to try and win the game.

“We’re pleased to have Mako and Kyle back into the team and we’ve made some changes to our starting XV, but our finishers are just as important to our game plan. We look at the whole 80 minutes.

“We’ve trained very well this week, I’ve been very pleased with the players’ attitudes and work-rate.

“We’re hoping to put on a good performance on Saturday and kick on with our Six Nations campaign.”

England team to play Italy

15 Elliot Daly (Saracens, 48 caps)
14 Anthony Watson (Bath Rugby, 47 caps)
13 Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs, 35 caps)
12 Owen Farrell (C) (Saracens, 89 caps)
11 Jonny May (Gloucester Rugby, 62 caps)
10 George Ford (Leicester Tigers, 73 caps)
9 Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers, 105 caps)

1 Mako Vunipola (Saracens, 63 caps)
2 Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter Chiefs, 27 caps)
3 Kyle Sinckler (Bristol Bears, 40 caps)
4 Maro Itoje (Saracens, 44 caps)
5 Jonny Hill (Exeter Chiefs, 5 caps)
6 Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints, 86 caps)
7 Tom Curry (Sale Sharks, 29 caps)
8 Billy Vunipola (Saracens, 57 caps)
 
Replacements:
16 Jamie George (Saracens, 55 caps)
17 Ellis Genge (Leicester Tigers, 24 caps)
18 Will Stuart (Bath Rugby, 9 caps)
19 Charlie Ewels (Bath Rugby, 17 caps)
20 Ben Earl (Bristol Bears, 9 caps)
21 Jack Willis (Wasps, 2 caps)
22 Dan Robson (Wasps, 8 caps)
23 Max Malins (Bristol Bears, 4 caps)