"Not Farrell or Smith" - Dan Biggar picks his England number 10 for the World Cup - Ruck

“Not Farrell or Smith” – Dan Biggar picks his England number 10 for the World Cup

Wales playmaker Dan Biggar has backed George Ford to be England’s number 10 when the 2023 Rugby World Cup kicks off in September.

He wrote in his column for the Mail Online: “Everyone will be crying out for Owen Farrell to play fly-half for England after that performance but I think a 10-12 combination with George Ford is the way they will go.

“Whenever you play 10, your performance generally depends how the rest of your team go. Saracens were by far the better team, with more possession, more phases and more fluidity in attack.

“Ford had a couple of nice touches but he was never able to put his shape on the game.

“I’ve been on two Lions tours with Farrell. He takes a bit of flak but his big-match temperament is incredible. Come finals day, that’s almost more important than skill.”

Biggar also backed Manu Tuilagi to regain a place in the England XV for the 2023 Rugby World Cup.

He added: “In big games you want your basics down well, which Farrell did, with a sprinkling of gold dust. He was a fraction better than Ford but he was surrounded by a more cohesive team.

“Steve Borthwick will want his best players on the park and Ford and Farrell are two of the best in England. It’s a no brainer, while someone like Manu Tuilagi can add a bit of brute force at 13.”

Borthwick’s 2023 RWC 55-Man England Training Squad Predicted

The 2023 Rugby World Cup is fast approaching, and rugby fans are eagerly anticipating the announcement of Steve Borthwick’s England training squad ahead of the competition.

It has been reported that Borthwick has contacted 70 England hopefuls, before he whittles down the group for the final preparations ahead of a series of RWC warm-up games this Summer.

England face a trip to Dublin, as they take on the 2023 Six Nations Grand Slam winners Ireland, before back-to-back home and matches with Wales.

Steve Borthwick, Head Coach of England Rugby during the England Rugby Captains Run ahead of the Six Nations Match between Wales and England at Principality Stadium, London on 24 Feb 2023 (Photo: Tom Sandberg/PPAUK)

The last stop on the road to the 2023 RWC is Fiji, as the Pacific Islanders make the trip to Twickenham Stadium on the 26th of August.

So, ahead of the upcoming training squad announcement, here are RUCK’s picks, for the 55-man group, who will hope to bring the Web Ellis Trophy back home to Twickenham this Autumn.



Ellis Genge of England during the Guinness Six Nations match between England and France at Twickenham Stadium, Twickenham, London on Saturday 11th March 2023 | Photo: James Fearn/PPAUK.
  1. Ellis Genge (Bristol Bears)

2. Mako Vunipola (Saracens)

3. Kyle Sinckler (Bristol Bears)

4. Bevan Rodd (Sale Sharks)

5. Jamie George (Saracens)

6. Val Rapava-Ruskin (Gloucester Rugby)

Val Rapava-Ruskin of Gloucester Rugby is tackled by John Afoa of Bristol Bears during the Gallagher Premiership Rugby match between Gloucester Rugby and Bristol Bears at Kingsholm Stadium on December 3 2021 in Gloucester, England. (Photo by Tom Sandberg/PPAUK)

7. Tom Dunn (Bath Rugby)

8. Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter Chiefs / Montpellier)

9. Jack Walker (Harlequins)

10. Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers)

11. Joe Heyes (Leicester Tigers)