The England interim head coach has overseen back-to-back away victories against Scotland and Italy, with the performances of Lee Dickson and Ben Morgan from the bench leaving Lancaster particularly pleased.
“Players have to be on form and playing well to go into a Test match against a side of the quality of Wales,” said the England coach.
“There were also some impressive performances from the bench against Italy, notably Lee and Ben.
“There are now options coming back into the equation which previously weren’t available – three World Cup players [Toby] Flood, [Manu] Tuilagi, and [Courtney] Lawes.”
Tuilagi makes his long-awaited return after suffering a shattered eye-socket and recovering from a hamstring injury.
The 20-year-old was a controversial figure during England’s disappointing World Cup campaign in New Zealand, when he made headlines for jumping out of an Auckland ferry after England’s defeat by France in the quarter-finals.
But the Leicester Tigers winger says he is eager to make a fresh start with England.
“When you wear the Red Rose you go out and represent everyone in the country. That has been clarified,” Tuilagi told the BBC.
“That comes from the experiences I had in New Zealand. After that you learn and change things.
“The World Cup obviously wasn’t great, but we’ve got the Six Nations now to focus on. It feels like I’m almost starting again with England. I have to put in the work.”
England players released for club duty: Mike Brown, Joe Marler, Jordan Turner-Hall (all Harlequins), Calum Clark, Paul Doran Jones, Courtney Lawes (all Northampton), Toby Flood, Manu Tuilagi, Thomas Waldrom (all Leicester), Lee Mears (Bath), Ben Morgan (Scarlets), Tom Palmer (Stade Francais), Charlie Sharples (Gloucester), Joe Simpson, Rob Webber (both Wasps), Matt Stevens (Saracens).
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