Next LIVE rugby on TV
to be announced
Wed, 31 Jul 2013 14:30:05 +0000
  • Switch Edition
ESPN SCRUM / England / News
France v England
Paris holds no fear for England's young guns
ESPN Staff
January 31, 2014
England's fresh-faced debutants Jack Nowell and Luther Burrell © Getty Images

Stuart Lancaster has backed Jack Nowell and the rest of England's young guns to shine in the Paris furnace come Saturday.

Lancaster named an inexperienced backline for Saturday's Six Nations opener against France with debuts handed to Nowell and Luther Burrell. Alongside the duo in the backline, Jonny May starts, who has just one cap, while Billy Twelvetrees is still finding his feet at Test level.

For Nowell, he has just 16 Aviva Premiership starts to his name but Lancaster has full faith in the youngster's ability. And England's willingness to give youth its head was evident at a cinema local to the squad's Surrey training base 12 hours before the team was announced.

Arriving to watch The Wolf of Wall Street with Tom Johnson and Henry Thomas, 20-year-old Nowell's lack of ID meant he was turned away.

"I was really excited to go. Tom and Henry two got their tickets and I paid for mine last, but the woman said 'sorry, I need to see your ID'," Nowell said. "I checked to see the film was an 18 and not a 15 just in case! I didn't have any ID on me so I had to go back to the hotel to get some.

"We had to watch the showing an hour later... with my passport in my back pocket!"

Lancaster highlights the dwindling number of games - 20 - left until the 2015 World Cup to explain his willingness to pick Nowell, Burrell and May against the favourites. It is a risky approach to what is possibly the toughest fixture in the Six Nations, but Lancaster reckons inexperience also has its benefits.

"The upside is that they have no fear. There is no fear factor that sometimes can build during players' careers in international rugby," he said. "Ultimately I've gone with my gut instinct which was probably formulated after watching training on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday last week.

"I had a bit of time to think about it over the weekend. Form, potential and consistency of performance in the Premiership and Europe have been factors.

"Leading up to our camp there was a lot of analysis that we did on the games, both objective analysis and in terms of stats. And there's the subjective feel you have from what you've seen in the games.

"There's the opinions of the directors of rugby whose counsel I trust. And then you come into camp and you get a feel for whether a player is ready. My instincts after the three days told me that Jack, Luther and Jonny were ready."

Play ESPNscrum International Fantasy Rugby 2014
Create your FREE team now!

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd

Live Sports

Communication error please reload the page.

  • Snooker

    Higgins hoping for career kick-start

    John Higgins says he still has a competitive desire to win and hopes a run at the UK Championship can give his career the kick-start it desperately needs

  • Golf

    'I would love to captain a Ryder Cup team'

    Ian Poulter says he would love to one day captain the European Ryder Cup team - but hopes he is at least 10 years away from that dream becoming a reality

  • Rugby

    Crusaders may host Hurricanes in Fiji

    A sponsor is reported to have offered to back the Crusaders' Super Rugby 2015 game against the Hurricanes if it is played in Fiji, as AMI Stadium is unavailable due to an international soccer tournament

  • Rugby

    Wasps' Daly hit with three-week ban

    Wasps' Elliot Daly has been banned for three weeks for verbally abusing referee Ian Tempest in his side's 31-15 Aviva Premiership defeat at Exeter Chiefs on Saturday

  • Football

    Everton and West Ham charged for melee

    The FA has charged Everton and West Ham with "failing to ensure their players conducted themselves in an orderly fashion" in a stormy Premier League encounter at Goodison Park

Sponsored Links
Make $170 in 60 seconds!
Google Vs Facebook, 60 sec. knock out! Choose a champion, Become a Winner!
Make $25 in 1 Minute!
Start trading with the biggest broker! Register now to receive $25 for FREE!