England make two changes ahead of Wales Six Nations showdown

Last Updated February 08 2018, 10:21Rugby Union
Jonathan Joseph
Jonathan Joseph

England have swapped Jonathan Joseph for Ben Te'o in one of two changes for Saturday's NatWest 6 Nations clash with Wales.

Joseph starts at outside centre after making an impact off the bench in the 46-15 victory over Italy, with Te'o demoted to a replacement role for the round two match at Twickenham.

The second change sees Danny Care become England's most capped scrum-half, edging past the milestone of 77 held by Matt Dawson, after he was chosen to replace knee-injury victim Ben Youngs in the number nine jersey.

Richard Wigglesworth has been drafted straight on to the bench, having been called-up as Youngs' replacement after Eddie Jones' first choice in the position ruptured his MCL at the Stadio Olimpico.

Sky Bet make England 12-point favourites and 9/4 for the Grand Slam.

"Danny Care very much deserves the honour of being the most capped England scrum-half and I am sure he'll make the most of his opportunity on Saturday," Jones said.

"We want to make sure our set piece is dominant, our defence is ferocious and that we are at our best against Wales."

The selection of Joseph over Te'o was predicted by Wales coach Warren Gatland earlier this week and sees England restored to their strongest available starting XV.

Te'o impressed with his powerful carrying against Italy but faded in his first appearance since recovering from ankle surgery in mid-June and Jones has opted for the greater experience and slick footwork of Joseph in his place.

Apart from the presence of Te'o and Wigglesworth, the bench remains unchanged.

England v Wales (Saturday, 1645)

England team: M Brown (Harlequins); A Watson (Bath Rugby), J Joseph (Bath Rugby), O Farrell (Saracens), J May (Leicester Tigers); G Ford (Leicester Tigers), D Care (Harlequins); M Vunipola (Saracens), D Hartley (Northampton Saints), D Cole (Leicester Tigers), J Launchbury (Wasps), M Itoje (Saracens), C Lawes (Northampton Saints), C Robshaw (Harlequins), S Simmonds (Exeter Chiefs).

Replacements: J George (Saracens), A Hepburn (Exeter Chiefs), H Williams (Exeter Chiefs), G Kruis (Saracens), S Underhill (Bath Rugby), R Wigglesworth (Saracens), B Te'o (Worcester), J Nowell (Exeter Chiefs).

Wales team: L Halfpenny (Scarlets); J Adams (Worcester), S Williams (Scarlets), H Parkes (Scarlets), S Evans (Scarlets); R Patchell (Scarlets), G Davies (Scarlets); R Evans (Scarlets), K Owens (Scarlets), S Lee (Scarlets), C Hill (Dragons), A W Jones (Ospreys, capt), A Shingler (Scarlets), J Navidi (Cardiff Blues), R Moriarty (Gloucester).

Replacements: E Dee (Dragons), W Jones (Scarlets), T Francis (Exeter), B Davies (Ospreys), J Tipuric (Ospreys), A Davies (Scarlets), G Anscombe (Cardiff Blues), G North (Northampton).

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