Tuesday 16 October 2018

Eddie Jones axes flyhalf George Ford for clash with Grand Slam-chasing Ireland

England's head coach Eddie Jones
England's head coach Eddie Jones
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

England have dropped George Ford and moved Owen Farrell to fly-half for their NatWest 6 Nations clash with Ireland at Twickenham.

Dylan Hartley has recovered from a tight calf to lead the team in Saturday's final round of the Championship, but his front row colleague Dan Cole has been replaced by Kyle Sinckler.

Eddie Jones has performed significant surgery on the team that lost 22-16 to France, with Danny Care and Joe Launchbury making way for Richard Wigglesworth and George Kruis.

Anthony Watson retains his place at full-back with Mike Brown confined to the bench for another week.

There is a new-look midfield partnership of Ben Te'o and Jonathan Joseph, who returns at outside centre, and Elliot Daly has recovered from his foot problem to start on the left wing.

Injuries to Nathan Hughes and Courtney Lawes see Sam Simmonds and James Haskell start at number eight and openside flanker.

Eddie Jones issued an apology on Wednesday night after footage emerged of the England head coach describing Ireland as "the scummy Irish" and Wales as a "little s*** country" during a talk on leadership given last year.

Speaking publicly on the matter for the first time on Thursday, Jones said: "I apologise for the remarks.

"I sincerely mean that and I really don't have anything else to say on the matter. I'm happy to answer questions on the game coming up, but the other matter is dead."

 

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