Prev Game: International Match Sat 21st Jun

prev game - England
team 1 score team 2
New Zealand 36 - 13 England

Next Game: International Match Sat 8th Nov

next game - England
team 1 score team 2
England 14:30 New Zealand

Six Nations: Stuart Lancaster is confident England debutants will cope in Paris

Last Updated: 30/01/14 10:20pm

  • Share:

Sky Bet

    • Retrieving latest Sky Bet odds

England head coach Stuart Lancaster is backing his new-look three-quarter line to cope with the cauldron-like atmosphere in France.

The Red Rose head to Paris for Saturday's Six Nations opener with centre Luther Burrell and centre Jack Nowell set for their first caps, while Jonny May will be making just his second international appearance on the opposite wing.

Lancaster, though, is unfazed by questions over the timing of the shake-up, and said: "We're hugely excited about the game and looking forward to going to Paris this afternoon.

"Obviously you've seen the side. It's one we are very excited about. There were some really tough selection decisions heading into this game but I think consistency, form and potential have all played their part in it.

"From my point of view, I started two years ago and we had seven new caps go to Murrayfield. I've always believed that if a player's ready and deserving of an opportunity, then we'll give it to them.

"The lists goes on of players who have made their debuts. You've got to make your debut at some point. Luther Burrell is ready for the opportunity - he's done exceptionally well for his club and played in big European games.

"Jonny May has one cap and it's a big opportunity for him. You watch Jack Nowell playing against Toulon Bryan Habana and these sorts of guys and I think he's ready and that now's the time.

"There's great potential in them. You can see in the tries May has scored that he's a great broken-field runner with great pace and footwork. Nowell on the other wing is different - he breaks tackles, beats defenders and used to play full-back so is great under the high ball.

"Burrell has been around a bit longer. He's someone I've known since he was 15 and it was a great pleasure to me to tell him he was playing."

Cover

Further queries were made over the absence of a specialist fly-half on the bench and the decisions to omit the experience of scrum-half Ben Youngs and wing Chris Ashton.

But Lancaster added: "We've got Billy Twelvetrees who played 10 for Gloucester not so long ago and did it well. We've also got Alex Goode, who Saracens have used as a 10 in the same situation. He was always a 10 throughout his development.

"I've said to Chris Ashton that I've been really pleased in the development he's made since November. Saracens have done a fantastic job in developing him and he's playing well. My message to him is to keep working on the little things all players have to work on.

"I've always played Chris on that right wing and now I want to have the opportunity to see someone else. We are 20 games out from a World Cup and I'm sure Chris will come back after Sunday, will be training well and fight for a place against Scotland.

"The same goes for Ben Youngs. Scrum-half was the most competitive position of all when you put Richard Wigglesworth in the equation. He's trained exceptionally well and played well for Saracens. In that position, we've gone for the form players.

"Danny Care suffered the disappointment of not being involved in the first game in the autumn. We gave him some areas to work on - his game management and his kicking game. He's gone away and done that while retaining his points of difference."

  • Share:

Related

Six Nations 2014: France v England

Vunipola: a super attack and defensive effort fro the England No.8

Praise for England

Dewi Morris praises Billy Vunipola, Danny Care and Owen Farrell despite England's loss to France.

Stuart Lancaster: England head coach focused on future

Lancaster defends strategy

England head coach Stuart Lancaster has defended his use of replacements during their 26-24 defeat by France in Paris.

Chris Robshaw (right): England skipper laments poor start in Paris

Robshaw: We must start better

England captain Chris Robshaw admits his side cannot afford any more slow starts in the Six Nations this season.

Poll

Most Popular

Features

English Rose

English Rose

The values of English rugby were underlined on Monday as they launched their new kit in association with Canterbury.

Hard Yarde

Hard Yarde

Marland Yarde gives Sky Sports the inside track on England's second Test defeat to the All Blacks.

High Stakes

High Stakes

Ahead of England's tour to New Zealand, Joe Launchbury speaks to Sky Sports.