England head coach Eddie Jones makes one change to his starting XV to face Ireland in Dublin in the Six Nations on Saturday; Saracens’ Elliot Daly comes in at 13 in place of the injured Henry Slade (calf); Harlequins centre Joe Marchant comes onto the replacements bench
Elliot Daly has been recalled to the England XV, but in the 13 shirt
England head coach Eddie Jones has made one change to his starting XV to face Ireland in Dublin on Saturday, as Elliot Daly comes in to start at outside-centre in place of the injured Henry Slade.
Exeter Chiefs midfielder Slade injured his calf in training on Monday, and though Daly has predominately been used at full-back by England (31 of 54 Tests), Max Malins remains at 15 with Daly slotting in at 13.
Within his England career to date when not at full-back, Daly has featured 18 times on the wing, and four times at centre – only one of which was ever a start: vs South Africa at Twickenham in November 2016.
Henry Slade has been ruled out of Saturday’s Test due to a calf injury picked up at training
Daly did feature for former club Wasps at 13 quite regularly, but since moving to Saracens has almost exclusively performed as a full-back.
Among the replacements, Harlequins centre Joe Marchant is listed in the 23 shirt, replacing Daly after the latter’s promotion.
“This is our most important game of the tournament and we want to finish well,” Jones said on Thursday.
“We’re anticipating a hard, tough game against Ireland and we’ve picked this team to cope with that.
“We want to take it to Ireland physically and play the rugby we want to play.”
Daly has only ever started one game for England at centre before now – five years ago in 2016
The side remains the same otherwise, with Anthony Watson and Jonny May completing the back three either side of Malins, Owen Farrell captaining from 12 and George Ford and Ben Youngs again the half-backs.
The forward pack is unchanged from the 23-20 victory over France at Twickenham in Round 4, with Luke Cowan-Dickie keeping his place at hooker ahead of Jamie George. Mako Vunipola and Kyle Sinckler start either side at loosehead and tighthead prop respectively.
Bath lock Charlie Ewels keeps Exeter’s Jonny Hill on the bench by starting alongside Maro Itoje, while the back-row is Mark Wilson, Tom Curry and Billy Vunipola.
Luke Cowan-Dickie remains as the starting hooker over Saracens’ Jamie George
England complete their 2021 Six Nations campaign away to Ireland at the Aviva Stadium, having lost at home to Scotland and away to Wales, but beaten Italy and France at Twickenham.
Ireland meanwhile have lost to Wales away and France at home, while beating Italy in Dublin and Scotland at Murrayfield.
Neither side are in title contention, therefore, but both sets of players will have an eye on the summer’s British and Irish Lions Test series vs South Africa, and will be gunning to impress.
England: 15 Max Malins, 14 Anthony Watson, 13 Elliot Daly, 12 Owen Farrell, 11 Jonny May, 10 George Ford, 9 Ben Youngs; 1 Mako Vunipola, 2 Luke Cowan-Dickie, 3 Kyle Sinckler, 4 Maro Itoje, 5 Charlie Ewels, 6 Mark Wilson, 7 Tom Curry, 8 Billy Vunipola.
Replacements: 16 Jamie George, 17 Ellis Genge, 18 Will Stuart, 19 Jonny Hill, 20 Ben Earl, 21 Dan Robson, 22 Ollie Lawrence, 23 Joe Marchant.