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Ma'asi and Sleightholme named in England Under-18s squad

Travis PerkinsSponsored by Travis Perkins

England Under-18s have named two Saints in their 2018 squad as they confirm their first six fixtures of the season.

Saints' youngsters Samson Ma'asi and Ollie Sleightholme have been named among the 42-man squad for the England Under-18's games for the coming year.

Impressing in the Premiership Rugby Academies U18 League all season for Saints, the youngsters will begin their season against France at Stade Jean Rolland, in Digne-les-Bains on 3 March.

Fixtures against Scotland (18 March) and Wales (25 March) follow, before the squad convene in Wales for the Six Nations Festival at the end of March.

Saints' Academy Manager Simon Sinclair insisted Ma'asi and Sleightholme's inclusion was a testament to the players' hard work over the past few years.

“We’re really pleased for the boys. They've both put in a huge amount of work over the past year and it's great to see it paying off for them. 

"We've had a good amount of success with the England Under-18s over the last few years and it's testament to the efforts of the coaches through the age groups especially Paul Diggin, with help this season from James Craig, that our players continue to achieve at that level.

"I'm thoroughly looking forward to watching the boys wear the white shirt."

England U18 head coach John Fletcher said: “We’ve coached and assessed players in our pre-Christmas camps as well as watching the seven rounds of U18 academy games, and have come up with a group of exciting young players.

“This is the start of their international journey and we want them to go out and have fun and express themselves."