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Starts for Coles, Dingwall and Sleightholme in World Rugby U20 Championship opener

Northampton Saints trio Alex Coles, Fraser Dingwall and Ollie Sleightholme have all been named among the starting line-up for England U20s' first clash of the 2019 World Rugby U20 Championship.

Led by captain Dingwall, Coles and Sleightholme join the side to face Ireland tomorrow (4 June, kick-off 7.30pm BST) in the opening game of this year's competition at CRAI Club in Santa Fe, before taking on Italy on 8 June and Oceania champions Australia on 12 June.

Head coach Steve Bates said: “The key element is that we are playing the side that won the U20 Six Nations so we know it is going to be a big challenge and we have got to be right at the top of our game. 

“The players are in really good shape, having now spent a fair amount of time with each other they have gelled extremely well and look to be a tight group and we hope that will translate to a good performance on Tuesday.

And speaking of skipper Dingwall, Bates said: “Fraser is another seasoned campaigner, having also played in this tournament last year and he’s played some senior Premiership rugby as well so has developed well as a player over the past six months.

"He is extremely level headed, has an astute rugby brain and is well respected by the other players so he is an obvious choice for us to be captain. Along with the rest of our leadership group we expect them to contribute at key times and in key moments.”

All of England U20s' fixtures - that kick-off at 7.30pm BST - are being streamed live on World Rugby's platforms, with the knock-out stages (17 June) and finals day (22 June) being shown live on ITV.

World Rugby U20 Championship
Tuesday 4 June, 2019
Sante Fe
Kick-off 7.30pm

15 Tom de Glanville (Bath Rugby)
14 Ollie Sleightholme (Northampton Saints)
13 Fraser Dingwall (capt, Northampton Saints)
12 Cameron Redpath (Sale Sharks)
11 Tom Seabrook (Gloucester Rugby)
10 Manu Vunipola (Saracens)
9 Ollie Fox (Bath Rugby)

1 Olly Adkins (Gloucester Rugby)
2 Nic Dolly (Sale Sharks)
3 Joe Heyes (Leicester Tigers)
4 Joel Kpoku (Saracens)
5 Alex Coles (Northampton Saints)
6 Ted Hill (Worcester Warriors)
Aaron Hinkley (Gloucester Rugby)
8 Tom Willis (Wasps)

16 Alfie Barbeary (Wasps)
17 Kai Owen (Worcester Warriors)
18 Alfie Petch (Exeter Chiefs)
19 Will Capon (Bristol Bears)
20 James Kenny (Exeter Chiefs)
21 Richard Capstick (Exeter Chiefs)
22 Rusiate Tuima (Exeter Chiefs)
23 Josh Basham (Newcastle Falcons)
24 Sam Maunder (Exeter Chiefs)
25 Luke James (Sale Sharks)
26 Connor Doherty (Sale Sharks)
27 Arron Reed (Sale Sharks)
28 Josh Hodge (Newcastle Falcons)

4 June: England U20s v Ireland U20s (KO 7.30pm BST), live on World Rugby platforms.
8 June: England U20s v Italy U20s (KO 7.30pm BST), live on World Rugby platforms.
12 June: England U20s v Australia U20s (KO 7.30pm BST), live on World Rugby platforms.
Knockout stages on Monday, 17 June and finals day on Saturday, 22 June, live on ITV.​ 

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