The third Vunipola makes his first England U20 start on Friday - Ruck

The third Vunipola makes his first England U20 start on Friday

Manu Vunipola will earn his first England U20s start against Scotland on Friday.

The young Saracen, who is the cousin of England forwards Billy and Mako Vunipola, has featured off the bench in the last two matches but starts at fly-half in the final round of the U20s Six Nations Championship.

Second row Jon Kpoku, who has impressed with loan club Ampthill this season, has been named on the bench for the match at Franklin’s Gardens (KO 19H45) and is in line for his U20s debut.

Head Coach Steve Bates said: “We feel this Friday is a good opportunity to take a closer look at the players who have not had that much involvement during the tournament, while also including those that are returning from Premiership duty. We are mindful that making too many changes will be disruptive so we’ve tried to keep them to a minimum.

“We are still developing our game and have very clear goals in terms of what we want to achieve on the field in terms of performance. What we’re looking for on Friday is a bit more continuity in our play and more consistency in our performance in terms of looking after the ball and managing the game.”

“We’ve used a lot of players in the tournament and feel that will be beneficial for us going into the World Rugby U20 Championship in June. We can only take 28 players to the World Rugby U20 Championship and selection is going to be very difficult so for them every opportunity they have to impress us is an important one.”

England men U20s v Scotland

15 Tom de Glanville (Bath Rugby)

14 Arron Reed (Sale Sharks)

13 Ollie Lawrence (Worcester Warriors)

12 Cameron Redpath (Sale Sharks)

11 Ollie Hassell-Collins (London Irish)

10. Manu Vunipola (Saracens)

9 Ollie Fox (Yorkshire Carnegie)

1 Kai Owen (Worcester Warriors)

2 Samson Ma’asi (Northampton Saints)

3 Joe Heyes (Leicester Tigers)

4 Alex Coles (Northampton Saints)

5 James Scott (Worcester Warriors)

6 Tom Willis (Wasps)

7 Aaron Hinkley (Gloucester Rugby)

8 Rusiate Tuima (Exeter Chiefs)


16 Alfie Barbeary (Wasps)

17 Olly Adkins (Gloucester Rugby)

18 Alfie Petch (Exeter Chiefs)

19 Jon Kpoku (Saracens)

20 Richard Capstick (Exeter Chiefs)

21 Gus Warr (Sale Sharks)

22 Kieran Wilkinson (Sale Sharks)

23 Josh Hodge (Newcastle Falcons)

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