England team to face Ireland: Maro Itoje makes first start - Ruck

England team to face Ireland: Maro Itoje makes first start

  • Eddie Jones names side to face Ireland at Twickenham on Saturday: 16:50 kick-off, ITV
  • Maro Itoje gets first start at lock after Joe Launchbury injury
  • Elliot Daly is named among the replacements
England Head Coach Eddie Jones has made two change to his starting line-up for the RBS 6 Nations game with Saracens lock Itoje replacing Courtney Lawes while loose-head prop Joe Marler is preferred to Mako Vunipola.

Courtney Lawes is named as a replacement having coming into the squad for injured Wasps forward Joe Launchbury.

Wasps centre Elliot Daly is also among the replacements and is in line for his debut with Jones reverting back to a 5-3 split on the bench.

The men in white have lost their last two matches at Twickenham, against Wales and Australia in Rugby World Cup 2015, but have not lost three in a row at the venue since 2008.

Ireland are the defending RBS 6 Nations champions, and Jones said: “Playing our first game at Twickenham after two away fixtures will be huge for us.

“We’re determined to put in a strong performance against a clever Irish side who are the benchmark of European rugby.”


James Haskell says England are in a “good place” ahead of Saturday’s game with Ireland at Twickenham.

“He is setting out exactly what he wants, how he wants it done, empowering the players to run things and do things they want to do, under his guidance,” said Haskell.

“It’s been really good, it’s hard, it’s intense but it’s a very good place to be. They are letting us be ourselves.”