Smith starts for England against Wallabies, Tuilagi on the wing

By Sports Desk November 11, 2021

Marcus Smith starts at fly-half and Owen Farrell returns at inside centre, while Manu Tuilagi moves to the wing when England face Australia on Saturday.

Smith came off the bench in the 69-3 thrashing of Tonga last weekend but will make his third Test start in place of George Furbank against the Wallabies at Twickenham.

Captain Farrell comes back into the team after missing the drubbing of the Pacific island nation due to his positive coronavirus test.

Tuilagi shifts from midfield to the right wing, with Jonny May on the other flank, and Maro Itoje will make his 50th appearance for his country in an unchanged pack.

Bevan Rodd and Raffi Quirke could make their debuts off the bench, but Joe Marler will not feature after the prop tested positive for COVID-19.

England head coach Eddie Jones said: "We know this will be a tough test for us, we're playing against a team who have been together a while and who have beat the world champions twice. As an Australian, I know how much this game means.

"We've had a really good week of preparation, we're looking to improve our performance this week and I think this side is building well."

England: Freddie Steward, Manu Tuilagi, Henry Slade, Owen Farrell (captain), Jonny May, Marcus Smith, Ben Youngs; Ellis Genge, Jamie George, Kyle Sinckler, Maro Itoje, Jonny Hill, Courtney Lawes, Sam Underhill, Tom Curry.

Replacements: Jamie Blamire, Bevan Rodd, Will Stuart, Charlie Ewels, Alex Dombrandt, Sam Simmonds, Raffi Quirke, Max Malins.

Related items

  • May facing Brisbane Test KO as Jones battles to find winning formula for England May facing Brisbane Test KO as Jones battles to find winning formula for England

    England wing Jonny May is set to miss Saturday's pivotal second Test against Australia in Brisbane as he makes a "graded return" from a coronavirus lay-off.

    The 32-year-old Gloucester player has yet to return to full squad training after emerging from quarantine, and that means he is not expected to figure in Eddie Jones' selection for the weekend.

    Defence coach Anthony Seibold said on Tuesday: "It was a long seven days for Jonny. He's been back on his feet today, running, but he didn't join in with the team. It will be a graded return to full training for him.

    "We tried to include Jonny while he was in isolation, so sending him the team meetings, the backs meetings. We've used him as a really experienced Test player. We have a really young group in the backs, so he's been a bit of a resource for those guys."

    May was absent as England loss the first Test 30-28 in Perth, where two late tries prevented the tourists incurring a heavier defeat. London Irish teenager Henry Arundell made a big impression off the bench as a wing and could come into contention to start in Brisbane, or Jones may elect to use him again as a high-impact replacement.

    England will also be without flanker Tom Curry, due to concussion, and the Sale Sharks man will not feature in the third Test in Sydney either.

    Seibold said potential replacements Lewis Ludlam, Sam Underhill and Jack Willis were "three really good guys".

    Quoted on Skysports.com, Seibold added: "Lewis Ludlam came on and competed really strongly when Tom Curry came off on Saturday.

    "He's been a great leader for Northampton this year and when he comes into camp you can certainly tell why he is the captain of his club.

    "Jack Willis is really good over the ball and competes really strongly defensively, while Sam Underhill was one of the outstanding players at the 2019 World Cup.

    "He missed out on selection for the first Test, but he’s competed really strongly to put himself in the frame for the second. So we've got some options there. Tom's a big part of our team so he'll be a loss, but it's an opportunity for somebody else."

    Losing senior figures means a difficult task for England becomes even more complicated. Australia have won their last five Tests on home soil – their best-such run since 2008 – and five of their last eight when hosting European opposition.

  • Root and Bairstow put England in sight of record chase against India Root and Bairstow put England in sight of record chase against India

    England need 119 runs to win the rearranged fifth Test and secure a drawn series with India after a superb day four put them in position to pull off a record chase.

    Delayed by a year after a COVID-19 outbreak in the India camp forced a Test originally scheduled for Old Trafford to be cancelled, a fascinating conclusion is in store at Edgbaston.

    The hosts will have confidence of chasing down 378 after reaching stumps on 259-3 with the two men who hit the winning runs as England clinched a 3-0 win over New Zealand last week - Joe Root (76 not out) and Jonny Bairstow (72no) continuing their outstanding form.

    India, who have dominated much of this match, were earlier dismissed for 245, and a seemingly ominous target that would break England's previous record chase of 362 against Australia in 2019.

    Stokes (4-33) polished off the India tail with the final three wickets. Prior to that, Matthew Potts (2-50) did much of the hard work in reducing the tourists - who were 125-3 at the start of play - from what had looked like a commanding position at 153-3, with smart hands from Root allowing Jack Leach to remove the dangerous Rishabh Pant (57).

    Despite getting little from their lower order, India may have felt comfortable defending such a lofty target. Any such feeling was quickly dispelled as Alex Lees and Zak Crawley belied their struggles opening the batting by reaching 100 inside 20 overs.

    Crawley was denied his 50 as he left a Jasprit Bumrah delivery that clipped off stump and when the bowler removed Ollie Pope for a duck and Lees was run out after tea, India looked to be turning the tide.

    But as they did consistently against New Zealand, Root and Bairstow wrested the momentum in aggressive fashion, both once again displaying the fluency and timing that has turned England's Test fortunes around and could now rescue this series.

     

    Anderson achieves another milestone

    Jimmy Anderson was not overly involved in limiting India's second-innings lead in a wicket-taking capacity, but his catch at midwicket to dismiss Shreyas Iyer saw him join a select group as he claimed his 100th catch.

    Indeed, he became the sixth player in Tests to register 1000 runs, 100 wickets and 100 catches. Also on that list are Garfield Sobers, Ian Botham, Carl Hooper, Shane Warne and Jacques Kallis.

    Lees and Crawley lay platform

    Lees' half-century came in just 44 balls, making it the fourth-fastest by an England opener. His stand of 107 with Crawley was England's sixth fourth-innings opening partnership of 100 or more this century. It was also the highest such England partnership at Edgbaston.

    After a Bumrah-inspired blip, Root and Bairstow took advantage of that platform, putting on 150 in 197 balls. Bairstow's lone six was England's 58th of 2022, putting them seven shy of their record total of 65 from 2005 with a three-Test series with South Africa and a tour of Pakistan still to come.

  • England's Curry ruled out for rest of Australia tour with concussion England's Curry ruled out for rest of Australia tour with concussion

    Tom Curry will play no further part in England's tour of Australia after he was ruled out for the remaining two games through concussion.

    The Sale Sharks flanker started for Eddie Jones' side in Saturday's first Test in Perth, but was replaced by Lewis Ludlam at the half-time break as the Wallabies snapped their losing streak in a dramatic 30-28 fightback win.

    Curry had travelled to Brisbane for the tourists' next match, but will now fly back to England later this week in what is a sizeable blow.

    The 24-year-old - a member of the British and Irish Lions party that toured South Africa last year - is considered a frontrunner for Jones' squad at the 2023 Rugby World Cup in France.

    "It has been agreed that in the interest of player welfare and recovery, [Curry] will take no further part in the tour," the Rugby Football Union confirmed in a brief statement.

    It is not yet known whether England will call up a replacement for Curry, who is the first noticeable injury the tourists have had to deal with.

    The Sharks star - a Premiership Cup winner with the club in 2020, a year on from playing in England's World Cup final defeat to the Springboks in Japan - will continue further assessment upon his return to England.

© 2022 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.