Six Nations

Parling recalled in England team

2015-03-19 12:15
Geoff Parling (Getty)

London - Leicester lock Geoff Parling was recalled by England head coach Stuart Lancaster on Thursday for Saturday's decisive Six Nations showdown with France at Twickenham.

Parling comes into the second row in place of Dave Attwood, who drops out of the squad, in the only change to the team that overcame Scotland 25-13 last weekend. Harlequins number eight Nick Easter returns to the bench.

"Geoff did well off the bench against Scotland and now that he has got some games under his belt we feel it is the right time to start him and use his experience and quality in the starting line-up," Lancaster said in a statement.

"The same goes for Nick Easter, who has really impressed in camp and in his appearances off the bench. Nick is a quality ball-carrier and great defender - things we feel we'll need in the latter stages of the game."

Seeking a first Championship success since 2011, England go into the final weekend level on points with Ireland and Wales at the top of the table, but with a points difference advantage of +4 and +25 over their respective pursuers.

Wales play away to Italy on Saturday, while Ireland tackle Scotland in Edinburgh.

"Finishing off the tournament at home is going to be a great occasion," Lancaster added.

"The support against Scotland last week was fantastic and this weekend we really need the crowd to get behind the team and drive them forward in what will be an exciting finale to this year's Championship."

Parling's selection is the reward for a powerful 30-minute cameo from the bench against Scotland and will see the British and Irish Lion replace Courtney Lawes in running the line-out.

Attwood misses out despite having started in all four matches of the tournament so far, with 36-year-old Easter's experience giving him the edge.

Tighthead prop Dan Cole will win his 50th cap and Lancaster said: "It's a great achievement for Dan to win his 50th cap, especially coming back from his injury last year.

"He is one of the cornerstones of our squad and we all wish him all the best."


England: 15 Mike Brown, 14 Anthony Watson, 13 Jonathan Joseph, 12 Luther Burrell, 11 Jack Nowell, 10 George Ford, 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Billy Vunipola, 7 Chris Robshaw (captain), 6 James Haskell, 5 Courtney Lawes, 4 Geoff Parling, 3 Dan Cole, 2 Dylan Hartley, 1 Joe Marler.

Substitutes: 16 Tom Youngs, 17 Mako Vunipola, 18 Kieran Brookes, 19 Nick Easter, 20 Tom Wood, 21 Richard Wigglesworth, 22 Danny Cipriani, 23 Billy Twelvetrees.

France: 15 Scott Spedding, 14 Yoann Huget, 13 Gael Fickou, 12 Maxime Mermoz, 11 Noa Nakaitaci, 10 Jules Plisson, 9 Sebastien Tillous-Borde, 8 Loann Goujon, 7 Bernard Le Roux, 6 Thierry Dusautoir (captain), 5 Yoann Maestri, 4 Alexandre Flanquart, 3 Nicolas Mas, 2 Guilhem Guirado, 1 Vincent Debaty

Substitutes: 16 Benjamin Kayser, 17 Rabah Slimani, 18 Uini Atonio, 19 Romain Taofifenua, 20 Damien Chouly, 21 Rory Kockott, 22 Remi Tales, 23 Mathieu Bastareaud

Read more on:    england  |  six nations  |  rugby

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