McLean and Alphonsi back for England
January 28, 2014
Alphonsi returns for England at flanker © Getty Images
England have named a strong side including Katy McLean and Maggie Alphonsi for their opening Women's Six Nations clash away to France.
Captain McLean will be looking to get England back to winning ways after their run of seven straight titles, which included six Grand Slams, ended in 2013 as Ireland won the tournament. The English were missing many big names due to their unsuccessful Sevens World Cup challenge and this year look like they are back to their strongest.
Head coach Gary Street is confident his side can improve on their third-place finish from last year.
"I certainly think this fixture could set the tone for this season and I am sure France will be thinking exactly the same," Street said.
"That is exactly what we need for this exciting but also very significant fixture as we play the host nation of this year's Rugby World Cup.
"We have made no secret of the fact that our goal is to win all our games this year and we are hoping Saturday's game is going to be the start of an exciting ride."
England: Kay Wilson; Katherine Merchant, Emily Scarratt, Rachael Burford , Michaela Staniford; Katy Mclean, Natasha Hunt; Rochelle Clark, Emma Croker, Sophie Hemming, Tamara Taylor, Emily Braund, Marlie Packer, Margaret Alphonsi, Sarah Hunter
Replacements: Victoria Fleetwood, Claire Purdy, Laura, Hannah Gallagher, Rebecca Essex, La Toya Mason, Ceri Large, Amber Reed
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
Communication error please reload the page.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger faces more selection problems for Wednesday's Champions League clash with Anderlecht after reports claimed he would have to rely on his third choice goalkeeper
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has revealed that he keeps his half-time team talks short during Champions League matches to avoid getting into trouble with UEFA
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has admitted his side's defensive frailties risk seeing them fall away from the Premier League's elite clubs
Jose Mourinho claims his current Chelsea team are nearing the heights reached by his record-breaking 2004-5 side
Dan Carter will make his return to the All Blacks squad for the first time this year after he was ruled out of the Bledisloe and Rugby Championship Tests due to a leg injury