Former Raiders in Six Nations bid

Joe Launchbury
Joe Launchbury

TWO former Worthing Raiders will be trying to help England lift the Six Nations title on Saturday.

Ex-Roundstone Lane duo Joe Launchbury and Joe Marler have be named in an unchanged England starting line-up for their crunch clash with Italy in the Stadio Olimpico on Saturday afternoon, along with Sussex’s Billy Twelvetrees.

Victory for Stuart Lancaster’s side would then see them clinch the Championship if France beat Ireland in Paris later on the same day, or if both side’s win, England would have to turn around a 49-point deficit.

Wales surrendered their Six Nations title at Twickenham last as England wrapped up their first Triple Crown since 2003 and it’s now all the play for on the final day.

Head coach Lancaster said: “It’s great to be able to name an unchanged 15 and we have been able to achieve consistency of selection from a very competitive squad this campaign.

“The Wales result was very significant for us but we need to finish the tournament well in Rome. We have had a tight turnaround and the key this week has been to manage the players’ recovery and get them in the best shape for what will be a tough match against Italy.”

The only change from the squad that beat Wales 29-18 at Twickenham is Manu Tuilagi being named among the England replacements in place of Alex Goode.

England: M Brown (Harlequins); J Nowell (Exeter), L Burrell (Northampton), B Twelvetrees (Gloucester), J May (Gloucester); O Farrell (Saracens), D Care (Harlequins); J Marler (Harlequins), D Hartley (Northampton), D Wilson (Bath), J Launchbury (Wasps), C Lawes (Northampton), T Wood (Northampton), C Robshaw (Harlequins, capt), B Morgan (Gloucester). Replacements: T Youngs (Leicester), M Vunipola (Saracens), H Thomas (Sale), D Attwood (Bath), T Johnson (Exeter), L Dickson (Northampton), G Ford (Bath), M Tuilagi (Leicester).