Daly on wing for England

Date published: February 2 2017

England have named their side for their Six Nations opener against France at Twickenham on Saturday, with Elliot Daly starting on the wing.

There are five changes to the starting XV that defeated Australia at the end of last year to complete an unbeaten 2016.

Daly (Wasps) starts on the left wing with Jonny May (Gloucester) installed on the right. In the scrum Joe Marler (Harlequins) packs down at loosehead, Joe Launchbury (Wasps) is named in the second-row and Maro Itoje (Saracens) starts at blindside flanker making up a matchday XV totalling 595 caps.

“We’ve been able to select a very strong and experienced team to play against France and we are excited to get the tournament underway,” said England head coach Eddie Jones.

“There’s a great rivalry between the countries so we’re looking forward to a great occasion playing against one of England’s oldest foes. We are ambitious and want to be the number one team in the world.”

On the bench there are returns for loosehead prop Matt Mullan, flanker James Haskell (both Wasps) and wing Jack Nowell (Exeter Chiefs).

“In rugby terms you’ve traditionally got two contrasting styles – French flair and England’s dogged conservative approach, but we want to be absolutely daring against the French in this first game and set the standard for the tournament,” added Jones.

“Guy Noves likes a big team. He picks a traditional French forward pack with squat front-rowers who scrummage well, big locks who give a lot of ballast and athletic back-rowers. It’s based on size and crunching that gain line, getting an off-load and then playing with flair. Of course this gives you an opportunity when you’ve got a big forward pack against you and we intend to exploit that.

“We want to get better all of the time, we are ambitious and we want to be the number one team in the world.

“It’s exciting to be back at Twickenham. We’ve got great supporters and we’re looking forward to hearing them turn up the volume on Saturday.”

England: 15 Mike Brown, 14 Jonny May, 13 Jonathan Joseph, 12 Owen Farrell, 11 Elliot Daly, 10 George Ford, 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Nathan Hughes, 7 Tom Wood, 6 Maro Itoje, 5 Courtney Lawes, 4 Joe Launchbury, 3 Dan Cole, 2 Dylan Hartley (c), 1 Joe Marler
Replacements: 16 Jamie George, 17 Matt Mullan, 18 Kyle Sinckler, 19 Teimana Harrison, 20 James Haskell, 21 Danny Care, 22 Ben Te’o, 23 Jack Nowell

Date: Saturday, February 4
Venue: Twickenham
Kick-off: 16:50 GMT
Referee: Angus Gardner (Australia)
Assistant Referees: Glen Jackson (New Zealand), Marius van der Westhuizen (South Africa)
TMO: Peter Fitzgibbon (Ireland)

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