Six Nations 2015: England match-day 23 unchanged for Italy

Head coach Stuart Lancaster makes no surprises for the second round by retaining his Millennium Stadium heroes

Stuart Lancaster has named an unchanged match-day squad for Saturday’s RBS 6 Nations match against Italy at Twickenham.

The England head coach retains the 23 players who produced a superb comeback to defeat Wales 21-16 in their opening match in Cardiff last Friday.

What’s encouraging is that we have quality players across the board who can go back to their Aviva Premiership clubs and put a marker down for later in the Six Nations.

Stuart Lancaster

England were boosted this week by the return to training of centres Brad Barritt and Kyle Eastmond, but Lancaster will keep faith with Jonathan Joseph and Luther Burrell.

Leicester Tigers lock Geoff Parling also returned to training from his knee injury, but was ruled out of the match against the Azzurri at Twickenham.

While 10 players are surplus to requirements for England this weekend, they will be welcomed back to their clubs for Round 14 of the Aviva Premiership with Leicester vs Gloucester, Saracens vs Bath and Wasps vs Harlequins the stand-out fixtures across the weekend.

“We’ll name the team on Thursday, but we’ve gone for the same squad given the performance against Wales,” Lancaster said.

“Though there are guys pushing hard for selection it’s important to have consistency and to build on the result in Cardiff.

“What’s encouraging is that we have quality players across the board who can go back to their Aviva Premiership clubs and put a marker down for later in the Six Nations.”

Lancaster will confirm his starting XV on Thursday morning.

England squad for Italy (23):

Forwards (13): Dave Attwood (Bath Rugby), Kieran Brookes (Newcastle Falcons), Nick Easter (Harlequins), Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers), Tom Croft (Leicester Tigers), Dylan Hartley (Northampton Saints), James Haskell (Wasps), George Kruis (Saracens), Joe Marler (Harlequins), Chris Robshaw (captain, Harlequins), Billy Vunipola (Saracens), Mako Vunipola (Saracens), Tom Youngs (Leicester Tigers).

Backs (10): Mike Brown (Harlequins), Luther Burrell (Northampton Saints), Danny Cipriani (Sale Sharks), George Ford (Bath Rugby), Jonathan Joseph (Bath Rugby), Jonny May (Gloucester Rugby), Billy Twelvetrees (Gloucester Rugby), Anthony Watson (Bath Rugby), Richard Wigglesworth (Saracens), Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers).

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