Worsley named at openside

Keo.co.za brings you the latest team announcements from the Six Nations.

Worsley named at openside

Martin Johnson has handed Joe Worsley a surprise re-call for England’s clash against Wales.

Steffon Armitage, who made his debut last week, has been dropped as Johnson opts for the physicality of Worsley. Whether he will be able to cope with the pace of playing as an openside flank is another matter altogether, as Worsley has hardly started for his club Wasps all season as Serge Betsen has been handed the No 7 jersey when Tom Rees has been injured.

It will be Worsley’s first Test since the group stages of the 2007 World Cup.

The only other change in the XV is the return of outside centre Mike Tindall, who has recovered from a back injury to replace Jamie Noon.

There are two alterations to the bench as halfbacks Paul Hodgson and Toby Flood replace Ben Foden and Shane Geraghty respectively.

England – 15 Delon Armitage (London Irish); 14 Paul Sackey (Wasps), 13 Mike Tindall (Gloucester), 12 Riki Flutey (Wasps), 11 Mark Cueto (Sale Sharks); 10 Andy Goode (Brive), 9 Harry Ellis (Leicester); 8 Nick Easter (Harlequins), 7 Joe Worsley (Wasps), 6 James Haskell (Wasps), 5 Nick Kennedy (London Irish), 4 Steve Borthwick (Saracens, c), 3 Phil Vickery (Wasps), 2 Lee Mears (Bath), 1 Andy Sheridan (Sale Sharks).

Subs: 16 Dylan Hartley (Northampton), 17 Julian White (Leicester), 18 Tom Croft (Leicester), 19 Luke Narraway (Gloucester), 20 Paul Hodgson (London Irish), 21 Toby Flood (Leicester), 22 Matthew Tait (Sale Sharks).

Chabal gets the chop

Sebastien Chabal has been dropped from the France team that includes four changes from their 30-21 loss to Ireland.

Chabal’s work-rate has been criticised in the wake of the defeat and Romain Millo-Chluski will start in the second row against Scotland. Other changes to the pack see props Fabien Barcella and Nicolas Mas in the staring team in place of Lionel Faure and Benoit Lecouls.

Toulouse winger Cedric Heymans wins a re-call in place of Julien Malzieu.

Like Chabal, captain Lionel Nallet was also criticised but coach Marc Lievremont said his place was never in doubt. “At no time have we envisaged changing our captain,” said Lievremont.“He is our captain. In no way is it a handicap to start him. We are very happy with his performance [against Ireland].”

Lievremont was also confident that cited centre Florian Fritz would escape sanction on Wednesday for allegedly eye-gouging.

“He is innocent, there is nothing significant there [on the video],” he added.

“For the moment, he is playing. He goes to London tomorrow and we will see.”

France – 15 Clement Poitrenaud; 14 Maxime Medard, 13 Florian Fritz, 12 Yannick Jauzion, 11 Cedric Heymans (all Toulouse); 10 Lionel Beauxis (Stade Francais), 9 Sebastien Tillous-Borde (Castres); 8 Imanol Harinordoquy (Biarritz), 7 Fulgence Ouedraogo (Montpellier), 6 Thierry Dusautoir (Toulouse), 5 Romain Millo-Chluski (Toulouse), 4 Lionel Nallet (Castres), 3 Nicolas Mas (Perpignan), 2 Dimitri Szarzewski (Stade Francais), 1 Fabien Barcella (Biarritz).

Subs: 16 Benjamin Kayser (Leicester), 17 Renaud Boyoud (Dax), 18 Sebastien Chabal (Sale), 19 Louis Picamoles (Montpellier), 20 Morgan Parra (Bourgoin), 21 Benoit Baby, 22 Julien Malzieu (both Clermont-Auvergne).