Sir Clive Woodward would make multiple changes to Steve Borthwick's England XV - Ruck

Sir Clive Woodward would make multiple changes to Steve Borthwick’s England XV

Former England coach Sir Clive Woodward has revealed his ideal lineup, which is very different to the team selected by Steve Borthwick.

Join the RUCK’s WhatsApp community here and get the latest news sent straight to your messages.

England’s summer tour begins in Tokyo on June 22, coinciding with Eddie Jones’ first game in his second tenure as Japan’s head coach.

Steve Borthwick’s squad will then head to New Zealand for two tests against the All Blacks: in Dunedin on July 6 and Auckland on July 13

Picking Slade at 12:

He wrote: “With the talent England have, it is essential the midfield starts working. Henry Slade still has a big role to play. I’d have Marcus Smith at fly-half with a centre pairing of Slade and Freeman.

“Freeman is special and can play both wing and centre. He reminds me of Ben Cohen, who had a brilliant combination of power and timing. Ollie Lawrence has been fantastic, offers a physical presence and will undoubtedly be in the midfield conversation.

“But playing Slade at 12 offers a second kicking option to Marcus Smith and provides plenty of experience.”

Wing selection:

He wrote: “I’d play Feyi-Waboso and Ollie Sleightholme on the wings. The former is a nailed-on starter and Sleightholme has come from nowhere to finish as the Premiership’s leading try scorer.

Ollie Sleightholme of Northampton Saints during the Gallagher Premiership Rugby Final Match between Northampton Saints and Bath Rugby at Twickenham Stadium on 8 June 2024. Photo: Elli Birch/PPAUK

“t is such an exciting summer of sport and English rugby needs to show why it can still be a blockbuster attraction. It is telling that, for the first time, traditional broadcasters will not air England’s game in Japan.”

England team to play Japan: George Furbank, Tommy Freeman, Henry Slade (vice-capt), Ollie Lawrence, Immanuel Feyi-Waboso, Marcus Smith, Alex Mitchell, Bevan Rodd, Jamie George (capt), Dan Cole, Maro Itoje (vice-capt), George Martin, Chandler Cunningham-South, Sam Underhill, Ben Earl (vice-capt)

Replacements: Theo Dan, Joe Marler (vice-capt), Will Stuart, Charlie Ewels, Tom Curry, Harry Randall, Fin Smith, and Tom Roebuck.

Sir Clive Woodward’s England XV:

George Furbank

Immanuel Feyi-Waboso

Tommy Freeman

Henry Slade

Ollie Sleightholme

Marcus Smith

Alex Mitchell