Launchbury in for Parling

  • Last Updated: June 20 2014, 2:03 BST

England have been dealt a blow on the eve of their final Test against New Zealand after Geoff Parling was ruled out with a hamstring injury.

Joe Launchbury: Now starts for England
Joe Launchbury: Now starts for England

Joe Launchbury will resume his successful RBS 6 Nations second-row partnership with Courtney Lawes by taking Parling's place in the starting XV, with Dave Attwood promoted to the bench.

"Geoff is not 100 per cent right so Joe will start," head coach Stuart Lancaster said.

Parling damaged his hamstring during last weekend's 28-27 defeat in Dunedin, a result that placed the series beyond England's reach.

The 30-year-old has been described by Lancaster as the "outstanding forward" on tour and his unexpected absence will be welcomed by world champions New Zealand.

Apart from his work rate around the pitch, Parling has been the series' best line-out operator, enabling him to break up the Lawes-Launchbury pairing even when both locks were available for Saturday.

Launchbury looked tired in the first two Tests, but must summon the energy for one last assault at the Waikato Stadium as England attempt to claim a prized victory in New Zealand.

"Geoff has done a great job since coming back, but Joe and Courtney established themselves in the Six Nations and we're looking forward to them pairing up again," Lancaster said.