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Six from Loughborough Lightning selected for England’s Six Nations squad

Six Loughborough Lightning players have been named in head coach Simon Middleton’s 42-strong squad for the 2023 TikTok Women’s Six Nations.

Sarah Hunter will look to add to her record-breaking 140 caps as a co-captain of the side alongside Saracens’ Marlie Packer, with Sadia Kabeya, Detysha Harper, Cath O’Donnell and Morwenna Talling completing a large contingent of Lightning forwards.

Helena Rowland is Loughborough’s only back in the squad, but the injured Emily Scarratt (neck and ankle) will be with the group for set days throughout the tournament to support with coaching delivery. 

The group will meet at St. George’s Park on Monday (6 March) for the first of two preparation camps at the East Midlands venue. 

England open their TikTok Six Nations campaign against Scotland in Newcastle on Saturday 25 March, before hosting Italy at cinch Stadium at Franklin’s Gardens in Northampton on Sunday 2 April (kick-off: 3pm).

They then travel to Cardiff to take on Wales at Cardiff Arms Park on Saturday 15 April, before visiting Ireland on Saturday 22 April.

All teams are again in action on ‘Super Saturday’, where England's final game of the tournament sees them host France in the team’s first standalone fixture at Twickenham Stadium on Saturday 29 April. 

Head coach Middleton said: “We’re really looking forward to the TikTok  Six Nations tournament.

“There are a number of new faces in this squad and while we are missing experienced players, this is a great opportunity for these younger players and we’re looking forward to working with them.

“There is always a regeneration period after any World Cup and this one is no different. Those selected have performed very well in the Allianz Premier 15s and deserve their opportunity.”

Simon Middleton, England Women’s Head Coach

“Sarah Hunter and Marlie Packer will co-captain the squad. Sarah has made it clear she will not be involved in the 2025 World Cup as a player, so it’s essential we look to continue to grow our leadership quality and depth. 

“Both Abbie Ward and Emily Scarratt expressed a wish to support our Six Nations campaign despite their playing absence. Both are an integral part of our strategy and leadership group and in my opinion, have great coaching potential in terms of their knowledge and their delivery. 

“The Six Nations is one of the most iconic tournaments in world rugby that we love participating in. We also recognise that it’s an important start point in terms of preparation for the 2025 World Cup.

“Spectators will see competitive games across the board and we can’t wait to get started.”

Tickets for the match at cinch Stadium at Franklin’s Gardens can be purchased HERE, and all matches will be broadcast live on the BBC.

England 2023 TikTok Women’s Six Nations squad

FORWARDS
Zoe Aldcroft (Gloucester-Hartpury, 38 caps)
Sarah Beckett (Gloucester-Hartpury, 25 caps)
Sarah Bern (Bristol Bears, 52 caps)
May Campbell (Saracens, uncapped)
Bryony Cleall (Harlequins, 7 caps)
Poppy Cleall (Saracens, 63 caps)
Kelsey Clifford (Saracens, uncapped)
Amy Cokayne (Harlequins, 70 caps)
Liz Crake (Wasps, uncapped)
Lark Davies (Bristol Bears, 44 caps)
Rosie Galligan (Harlequins, 9 caps)
Detysha Harper (Loughborough Lightning, 5 caps)
Sarah Hunter (co-capt; Loughborough Lightning, 140 caps)
Sadia Kabeya (Loughborough Lightning, 8 caps)

Poppy Leitch (Exeter Chiefs, 7 caps)
Alex Matthews (Gloucester-Hartpury, 56 caps)
Maud Muir (Gloucester-Hartpury, 17 caps)
Cath O’Donnell (Loughborough Lightning, 24 caps)
Marlie Packer (co-capt; Saracens, 89 caps)
Connie Powell (Gloucester-Hartpury, 7 caps)
Emily Robinson (Harlequins, uncapped)
Hannah Sims (Harlequins, uncapped)
Morwenna Talling (Loughborough Lightning, 5 caps)

BACKS
Holly Aitchison (Saracens, 15 caps)
Jess Breach (Saracens, 24 caps)
Abby Dow (Harlequins, 30 caps)
Elizabeth Duffy (Sale Sharks, uncapped)
Tatyana Heard (Gloucester-Hartpury, 9 caps)
Natasha Hunt (Gloucester-Hartpury, 60 caps)
Leanne Infante (Saracens, 57 caps)
Ellie Kildunne (Harlequins, 31 caps)
Claudia MacDonald (Exeter Chiefs, 24 caps)
Nancy McGillivray (Exeter Chiefs, uncapped)
Sarah McKenna (Saracens, 43 caps)
Lucy Packer (Harlequins, 9 caps)
Amber Reed (Bristol Bears, 62 caps)
Helena Rowland (Loughborough Lightning, 22 caps)
Ellie Rugman (Gloucester-Hartpury, uncapped)
Emma Sing (Gloucester-Hartpury, 2 caps)
Lydia Thompson (Worcester Warriors, 58 caps)
Lagi Tuima (Harlequins, 12 caps)
Ella Wyrwas (Saracens, uncapped)

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