The Wasps lock has not played for the Red Rose since last summer’s tour of New Zealand after neck surgery in October ruled him out of the QBE Internationals in November and the RBS 6 Nations earlier this year.
It gives us some valuable time together before the training camps begin next month to assess those who could come into the group before the World Cup and also a chance to assess those who should come into the reckoning beyond 2015.
But the 24-year-old recovered to play the last two rounds of the Aviva Premiership and will be hopeful of rediscovering his form that saw him win 20 consecutive England caps with a chance to shine just four months before the Rugby World Cup begins.
The England XV side will be captained by Northampton Saints scrum-half Lee Dickson, who skippered the England Saxons team to victory against the Ireland Wolfhounds in Cork four months ago.
Ten players from Stuart Lancaster’s 50-man England training squad for the Rugby World Cup have been included, along with a number of up and coming players and those who missed out on selection.
Red Rose boss Stuart Lancaster believes the match will allow his coaches to assess a number of players before he names his 31-man squad for the Rugby World Cup in August.
“This is an exciting squad with a good mix of young players who have performed well in the Premiership this season, players on the fringes of the World Cup squad and those already selected,” Lancaster said.
“It gives us some valuable time together before the training camps begin next month to assess those who could come into the group before the World Cup and also a chance to assess those who should come into the reckoning beyond 2015.
“The Barbarians team is full of quality and experienced internationals who will play together this week against Ireland ahead of our game so it will provide a real test for this group and we are looking forward to that challenge.”
While George Ford and Owen Farrell will be afforded the chance to showcase their credentials for the number 10 jersey in the Aviva Premiership final on Saturday, Danny Cipriani (pictured above) will run out at Twickenham a day later against the Barbarians.
Newcastle Falcons prop Kieran Brookes, Wasps centre Elliot Daly and prop Matt Mullan, Harlequins winger Marland Yarde and Leicester Tigers lock Ed Slater, who were all included in the extended training squad, are included.
Wasps winger Christian Wade, who was named in the Aviva Premiership team of the season, is one of the stand-out players not in the training squad to get a chance to prove his worth.
Players from Bath, Saracens, and Gloucester, who are all in action this weekend, were not considered for selection.
The Barbarians side, coached by former Australia head coach Robbie Deans, boasts 786 international caps, including England internationals Thomas Waldrom and Ugo Monye and British and Irish Lions duo Adam Jones and Alex Cuthbert.
The match will serve as a final outing for Harlequins winger Monye before his retirement, with Leinster flanker Shane Jennings and All Blacks lock Brad Thorn also set to hang up their boots after the match.
Forwards: Josh Beaumont (Sale Sharks), Kieran Brookes (Newcastle Falcons), Jack Clifford (Harlequins), Jake Cooper-Woolley (Wasps), Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter Chiefs), Gareth Denman (Northampton Saints), Jon Fisher (Northampton Saints), James Gaskell (Wasps), Joe Launchbury (Wasps), Matt Mullan (Wasps), Ed Slater (Leicester Tigers), Tommy Taylor (Sale Sharks), Alex Waller (Northampton Saints), Mark Wilson (Newcastle Falcons).
Backs: Will Chudley (Exeter Chiefs), Danny Cipriani (Sale Sharks), Elliot Daly (Wasps), Lee Dickson (Northampton Saints, captain), Shane Geraghty (London Irish), Alex Lewington (London Irish), Mathew Tait (Leicester Tigers), Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs), Christian Wade (Wasps), Marland Yarde (Harlequins).
Forwards (17): Matías Díaz (Pampas/Argentina), Jason Eaton (La Rochelle/New Zealand), Deon Fourie (Lyon), Shane Jennings (Leinster/Ireland), Pablo Matera (Pampas/Argentina), Konstantin Mikautadze (Toulon/Georgia), Ryu Koliniasi Holani (Panasonic Wild Knights/Japan), Adam Jones (Cardiff Blues/Wales), Rodrigo Capó Ortega (Castres/Uruguay), George Smith (Lyon/Australia), Saimone Taumoepeau (Castres/New Zealand), Rodrigo Tejerizo (Tucumán/Argentina), Brad Thorn (Leicester Tigers/New Zealand), Gerhard Vosloo (Toulon), David Ward (Harlequins), Thomas Waldrom (Exeter Chiefs/England), George Whitelock (Panasonic Wild Knights/New Zealand).
Backs (13): Gio Aplon (Grenoble/South Africa), Stephen Brett (Lyon), Tomás Cubelli (Belgrano Ath/Argentina), Alex Cuthbert (Cardiff Blues/Wales), Yoshi Fujita (Panasonic Wild Knights/Japan), Jimmy Gopperth (Leinster), Zane Kirchner (Leinster/South Africa), Ugo Monye (Harlequins/England), Wynand Olivier (Montpellier/South Africa), Ruan Pienaar (Ulster/South Africa), Tusi Pisi (Suntory Sungoliath/Samoa), Joe Rokocoko (Bayonne/New Zealand), David Smith (Toulon).
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