Sport : Rugby Union

ENGLAND NAME UNCHANGED XV

9th March 2012, 10:08am

Stuart Lancaster: Has kept the faith

Stuart Lancaster: Has kept the faith

England interim coach Stuart Lancaster has opted to name an unchanged starting XV for Sunday's RBS Six Nations encounter against France.

Having impressed despite going down to an agonising 19-12 to Wales last time out, Lancaster has kept faith in his new-look side.

That means Charlie Hodgson and Tom Palmer have to settle for spots on the bench in the only changes to the match-day 22.

Hodgson has recovered from a finger injury to replace Toby Flood, while Stade Francais lock Palmer returns after Courtney Lawes was ruled out.

Palmer will provide cover to the second row, with Geoff Parling and Mouritz Botha getting the nod in the engine room.

Owen Farrell, who impressed at Twickenham against Wales, retains the No.10 jersey - with Brad Barritt and human battering ram Manu Tuilagi teaming up in the centres.

Lancaster said: "We were really disappointed to lose to Wales but we took a lot out of the performance and felt it was right to pick the same starting team to go to Paris.

"It will be a massive challenge going to the Stade de France and playing against an experienced and unbeaten French side but we are excited about the opportunity and want to do the country proud."

England: 15 Ben Foden, 14 Chris Ashton, 13 Manusamoa Tuilagi, 12 Brad Barritt, 11 David Strettle, 10 Owen Farrell, 9 Lee Dickson, 8 Ben Morgan, 7 Chris Robshaw (capt), 6 Tom Croft, 5 Geoff Parling, 4 Mouritz Botha, 3 Dan Cole, 2 Dylan Hartley, 1 Alex Corbisiero.
Replacements: 16 Rob Webber, 17 Matt Stevens, 18 Tom Palmer, 19 Phil Dowson, 20 Ben Youngs, 21 Charlie Hodgson, 22 Mike Brown.

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