England rugby union head coach Eddie Jones has named a 36-man squad for the autumn internationals in November.
Jones has called up eight uncapped players to his squad, which has been hit by injuries and suspension. Twelve players - including Nathan Hughes, Jonathan Joseph, Chris Robshaw and Billy Vunipola - were unavailable for selection.
No.8 Ben Morgan is included for the first time since 2015 but there’s no place for his Gloucester teammate Danny Cipriani. The uncapped players are Nathan Earle (Harlequins), Ben Moon (Exeter Chiefs), Michael Rhodes (Saracens), Worcester duo Ted Hill and Nick Schonert, and Bath trio Joe Cokanasiga, Elliott Stooke and Zach Mercer.
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Sky Sports reports that there is also a recall for Sale Sharks’ Chris Ashton. After joining Sale in July he has yet to play for his new club and has not featured for England since June 2014. Leicester’s Manu Tuilagi, who won his most recent cap in March 2016, also returns.
Opportunities for new players
Speaking at the squad announcement today Jones said: “I’m really happy with the squad. We can only control what we can control and injuries have happened.
“It gives an opportunity for some good new players to play some important Tests for England, while players who have been in the squad before will have to take on more responsibility.”
Jones also confirmed that Owen Farrell (Saracens) and Dylan Hartley (Northampton Saints) will be England’s co-captains for the November fixtures against South Africa, New Zealand, Japan and Australia at Twickenham.
The England coach added: “I have named Dylan and Owen as co-captains for the series. They have both been excellent captains for England in the past and will provide a powerful leadership base for us on and off the field.”
The 36-man squad will fly to Portugal next week for a training camp. Then on Tuesday 30 October a 23-man squad will be confirmed for the Test match against the Springboks on 3 November.
England’s 36-man squad
- Forwards: Tom Curry, Charlie Ewels, Jamie George, Dylan Hartley (co-captain), Alec Hepburn, Ted Hill, Maro Itoje, George Kruis, Courtney Lawes, Zach Mercer, Ben Moon, Ben Morgan, Michael Rhodes, Nick Schonert, Brad Shields, Kyle Sinckler, Elliott Stooke, Sam Underhill, Harry Williams, Mark Wilson
- Backs: Chris Ashton, Mike Brown, Danny Care, Joe Cokanasiga, Elliot Daly, Nathan Earle, Owen Farrell (co-captain), George Ford, Alex Lozowski, Jonny May, Jack Nowell, Henry Slade, Ben Te’o, Manu Tuilagi, Richard Wigglesworth, Ben Youngs
Rugby union autumn internationals
Fixtures and start times (all times UK)
- 3 November: Japan vs. New Zealand (5.45am); Wales vs. Scotland (2.45pm); England vs. South Africa (3pm); Ireland vs. Italy (10pm)
- 10 November: Italy vs. Georgia (2pm); Scotland vs. Fiji (2.30pm); England vs. New Zealand (3pm); Wales vs. Australia (5.20pm); Ireland vs. Argentina (6.30pm); France vs. South Africa (7.45pm)
- 17 November: Italy vs. Australia (2pm); Wales vs. Tonga (2.30pm); England vs. Japan (3pm); Scotland vs. South Africa (5.20pm); Ireland vs. New Zealand (7pm); France vs. Argentina (7.45pm)
- 24 November: Italy vs. New Zealand (2pm); Scotland vs. Argentina (2.30pm); England vs. Australia (3pm); Wales vs. South Africa (5.20pm); Ireland vs. USA (6.30pm); France vs. Fiji (7.45pm)
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