Rugby: England coach changes backline

Freddie Burns will start in the 10 jersey on Saturday. Photo / Greg Bowker
Freddie Burns will start in the 10 jersey on Saturday. Photo / Greg Bowker

England coach Stuart Lancaster has made major changes to the starting line-up for the third test against the All Blacks on Saturday and restored Manu Tuilagi to his preferred position in the centres.

Lancaster named Freddie Burns at five-eighth, Ben Youngs at halfback and Kyle Eastmond at inside centre to replace the injured backs trio of Owen Farrell, Danny Care and Billy Twelvetrees.


He also drafted in Chris Ashton on the wing alongside Marland Yarde, switching Tuilagi back to the centres after a failed experiment to play him on the wing in the 28-27 second Test loss in Dunedin last weekend.

There are three changes in the pack with Dylan Hartley, Courtney Lawes and Billy Vunipola taking over from Rob Webber, Joe Launchbury and Ben Morgan.

England trail 2-0 in the three-Test series and Lancaster said the match in Hamilton was a final chance to claim what would be only England's third win against the All Blacks on New Zealand soil.

"We want to finish the tour and the season on a high and we have a fantastic opportunity on Saturday," he said.

"Our aim was to win a Test series and we are disappointed that we haven't but I am confident the players selected will go all out to achieve the win on Saturday."

England (15-1): Mike Brown; Chris Ashton, Manu Tuilagi, Kyle Eastmond, Marland Yarde; Freddie Burns, Ben Youngs; Billy Vunipola, Chris Robshaw (capt), Tom Wood; Geoff Parling, Courtney Lawes; David Wilson, Dylan Hartley, Joe Marler. Res: Rob Webber, Matt Mullan, Kieran Brooks, Joe Launchbury, Ben Morgan, Lee Dickson, Danny Cipriani, Luther Burrell.



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