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Home > News > England U20 gear up for next challenge
Your News England U20 gear up for next challenge

Full back Jack Wallace, prop Lee Imiolek and number eight Alex Gray all come into the England starting line-up for this week's RBS Under 20 6 Nations game against Ireland.

Wallace (London Wasps) wins his first cap, Imiolek (Sale Sharks) makes his first start and Gray (Newcastle Falcons) returns after suspension at Gloucester on Friday night (7.45pm).

Elsewhere Gloucester Rugby scrum half Jordi Pasqualin is on the bench after recovering from an ankle injury, Newcastle Falcons prop Kieran Brookes makes his first appearance at this level and London Wasps wing Christian Wade comes into the squad after England Sevens duty at the Wellington and Las Vegas IRB tournaments.

England top the table after opening wins over Wales (41-14) and Italy (16-10) but suffered a setback against Ireland last season when they were beaten 19-18 by a long range drop goal from Blackrock's Ian Madigan in the final moments.

Head coach Mark Mapletoft admits the side were stung by their defeat in Athlone last February but is delighted to be able to reward Imiolek for his powerful performance off the bench in San Dona di Piave and to welcome last year's England U18 full back Wallace into the side.

Mapletoft said: "Lee Imiolek's done really well with us this year. He's a good scrummager, offers around the field defensively and in attack and it's the right opportunity to give him a start.

"We've also got a good chance to have a look at Jack Wallace. He's a year young, he's had some opportunities at Wasps and we always keep the door open for these younger players.

"We're pleased to have Alex back. He's served his ban and he's eager to be involved again after doing well for us against Wales."

The former Gloucester and England fly half added: "Ireland look a good side and were very convincing winners against Italy. They've got a strong ball-carrying back row, strong centres, a good full back and will threaten all over the pitch.

"Some of our players will still be hurting after last year but there's not a great carry over and this is about this game, not the last one. If we perform to the targets we set we'll be very competitive."

England U20

15 Jack Wallace (London Wasps)

14 Will Hurrell (Leicester Tigers)

13 Jonathan Joseph (London Irish)

12 Tom Casson (Saracens)

11 Jonny May (Hartpury Coll & Gloucester Rugby)

10 Freddie Burns (Gloucester Rugby)

9 Sam Harrison (Leicester Tigers)

1 Lee Imiolek (Sale Sharks)

2 Jamie George (Saracens)

3 Shaun Knight (Gloucester Rugby)

4 Danny Wright (Gloucester Rugby)

5 Charlie Matthews (Loughborough Univ & Harlequins).

6 Jackson Wray (Univ of Hertfordshire & Saracens)

7 Jacob Rowan (Leeds Univ & Leeds Carnegie, captain)

8 Alex Gray (Newcastle Falcons)


16 Arthur Ellis (Royal Holloway & London Wasps)

17 Joe Marler (Harlequins)

18 Kieran Brookes (Northumbria Univ & Newcastle Falcons)

19 George Kruis (Saracens)

20 Jordi Pasqualin (Hartpury Coll & Gloucester Rugby)

21 Jake Sharp (Saracens)

22 Christian Wade (St Mary's College & London Wasps)

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