England consider Tuilagi on the wing

Date published: June 9 2014

450212078_3155314

England assistant coach Mike Catt has not ruled out the possibility of Manu Tuilagi being moved onto the wing for the second Test.

England assistant coach Mike Catt has not ruled out the possibility of Manu Tuilagi being moved onto the wing for the second Test.

Tuilagi was the outstanding ball carrier in the first Test, creating havoc for New Zealand, as he started with Six Nations pairing Billy Twelvetrees and Luther Burrell watching on.

Both are in contention for this week's Test match in Dunedin, but England must now consider whether to retain Tuilagi at 13 or move him out wide, along with a number of other combinations.

“It's about whatever's best for the team. It's not about development, it's about this weekend,” said Catt.

“If it's right to put Manu on the wing, we'll put him on the wing.

“We've got a couple of training sessions over the next couple of days to make a decision.

“Nothing is set in stone and there are a lot of permutations.

“Manu was extremely good at attacking at the weekend. He was a massive attacking threat and you need that against a top All Blacks side.”

Catt added that the number of selection options available, after many players stepped up at Eden Park, was pleasing.

“We performed particularly well on the weekend. It will be a tough selection because a lot of them performed admirably,” added Catt.

“Some people will be very happy and some won't because we have competition in all these positions now.

“What you don't want to do is give the jersey up. That drives you even further and motivates you even more.

“I remember when I used to compete with Will Greenwood. If I lost my spot or performed badly, I'd have to wait six months before I got another opportunity.

“That's the beauty of this England team at the moment. It's starting to have that level of competition for places, so no one wants to give up their shirts.

“By the end of the tour we'll have a clear idea of the people who can and can't perform at international level.”

COMMENTS