Brian Moore selects his England XV with no room for Alex Mitchell - Ruck

Brian Moore selects his England XV with no room for Alex Mitchell

Former England hooker Brian Moore believes that the match against Japan is an ideal warm-up for New Zealand, and he has chosen his team accordingly.

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Front-five decisions:

He wrote: “Up front, the only position where England have questionable depth is at tighthead and Trevor Davison’s omission has raised a few eyebrows given the form he has shown for Northampton this season.

“Although Dan Cole and Joe Marler, a loosehead, are still turning in solid performances, they are surely not going to feature in the run-up to the next World Cup. There are no obvious young replacements for them and this is an issue that Borthwick is going to have to deal with in the next 12 months.

“Starting Fin Baxter and Will Stuart against Japan would at least give Borthwick the chance to see different options; the same with Alex Coles in the second row.”

Back-row selection:

He said: “In the back row where Borthwick has to decide on what he wants and then fit the players accordingly. Does he view Chandler Cunningham-South or Ethan Roots as his No 6, or will he be tempted to shift George Martin from the second row?

Tom Curry of Sale Sharks during the Gallagher Premiership Rugby Semi Final Match between Bath Rugby and Sale Sharks at the Recreation Ground on 1 June 2024. Photo: Tom Sandberg/PPAUK

“His inclusion of Tom Curry, after such a lengthy absence because of injury, does not make sense unless he intends to pick him, so Sam Underhill might sit out the first game.”

Brian Moore’s England XV:

15: George Furbank

George Furbank of Northampton Saints during the Gallagher Premiership Rugby Match between Northampton Saints and Gloucester Rugby at Franklins Gardens Stadium on11 May. Photo: Richard Bierton/PPAUK

14: Tommy Freeman

13: Henry Slade

12: Ollie Lawrence

11: Immanuel Feyi-Waboso

10: Marcus Smith

9: Harry Randall

England A player Harry Randall (Bristol Bears) attacking during the International rugby match between England A and Portugal at Mattioli Woods Welford Road on February 25th- PHOTO: Steve Bond/PPAUK

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