Wasps pair set to start for Eng­land

Coventry Telegraph - - SPORT - By BOBBY BRIDGE Rugby Re­porter robert.bridge@reach­plc.com

WASPS for­wards Joe Launch­bury and Brad Shields have both been handed start­ing roles against South Africa for Satur­day’s sec­ond Test in Bloem­fontein.

Lock Launch­bury missed the first Test at El­lis Park with a calf strain, but re­turns to part­ner Maro Itoje in the sec­ond row while Shields earns his first start af­ter mak­ing his Eng­land de­but from the bench in last week­end’s 42-39 de­feat.

Danny Cipri­ani, who is set to join Glouces­ter from Wasps, takes a place on the bench but his for­mer Wasps team mate Dan Rob­son misses out for a sec­ond week run­ning.

El­liot Daly, who scored a try and a long-range penalty in the first Test is given a sec­ond chance at full back de­spite some un­char­ac­ter­is­tic er­rors, one of which re­sulted di­rectly in a Spring­boks try. Nathan Hughes is set to earn his 16th Eng­land cap from the bench as cover for Billy Vu­nipola.

Head coach Eddie Jones said: “We have come here to win the se­ries against South Africa and the squad is ready to go out and beat them this week­end. We have had a very good prepa­ra­tion this week and the in­ten­sity and ex­e­cu­tions in those ses­sions are go­ing to put us in a good po­si­tion for Satur­day.

“The way the team have come to­gether has been su­perb. Owen Far­rell, with a num­ber of the se­nior play­ers, has re­ally moulded the squad to­gether. They are work­ing hard to im­prove their game to make sure we win.” On the change in the back row, Jones added: “Based on South Africa’s likely se­lec­tion of an ex­tra li­ne­out jumper we have de­cided to start with Brad Shields, which im­proves our li­ne­out. It is tough on Chris Rob­shaw as he has been an out­stand­ing player for us but I know he will bounce back. “Danny Cipri­ani will come on to the bench, as we are look­ing for some­thing a lit­tle bit dif­fer­ent to fin­ish the game, which he can bring. He’s been train­ing well and do­ing ev­ery­thing that has been asked of him.” On fac­ing South Africa in Bloem­fontein, Jones added: “When you have a win like South Africa did on Satur­day you come into the game with a bit of con­fi­dence so we have to make sure we dent the Spring­boks’ con­fi­dence Danny Cipri­ani will come on to the bench, as we are look­ing for some­thing a lit­tle bit dif­fer­ent to fin­ish the game. early. Bloem­fontein is a very fast ground at al­ti­tude. It has an average of 60 points per Test match so we are an­tic­i­pat­ing an ebb-and-flow type game like we had in Johannesburg.”

Eng­land lost the first match of the three-Test se­ries against South Africa in Johannesburg 42-39 on Satur­day. Their fi­nal match is in Cape Town (June 23). All matches kick off at 4.05pm BST).

Brad Shields made his Eng­land de­but from the bench last Satur­day

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