For those who aren’t aware, new England coach Eddie Jones is only able to make 10 changes to the EPS selected by his predecessor Stuart Lancaster. Here are the 10 changes we would make to the current squad…
Jamie George for Billy Twelvetrees
Not exactly a like for like replacement, but given the abundance of backs, and the inclusion of just two hookers, it’s pretty clear someone has to come in, and who better than Jamie George?
Kieran Brookes for David Wilson
With Wilson getting on in age a little now, and Brookes putting in a good showing during the World Cup, it makes sense to bring the younger prop in to give him plenty of game time before 2019.
Courtney Lawes for Graham Kitchener
This is simply a case of restoring Lawes to the full EPS after he was temporarily dropped due to injury issues last season. Given Kitchener hasn’t really featured for England this is no surprise.
Joe Launchbury for Geoff Parling
Similar to Lawes, with Launchbury having been out with injury he was omitted from the EPS, however he should come back in to replace an ageing Parling in 2016.
Will Fraser or Matt Kvesic for Calum Clark
This is perhaps a little harsh on Clark who has performed well, but England need to get a genuine openside flanker in the side and should go with Fraser, unless injuries hamper his progress again.
Ben Morgan for Nick Easter
It’s a little harsh to drop Easter given the form he has been in, but England need to keep one eye on the future and it’s highly unlikely he will still be around for the next World Cup, unlike Morgan.
Maro Itoje for James Haskell
Another tough call but Itoje looks to be the future for England and offers something a little different which means Haskell is sacrificed in this instance, although it shouldn’t be the end for him.
Joe Simpson for Richard Wigglesworth
Again, this is another age related replacement and means bringing in the in-form Simpson for Wigglesworth who is again unlikely to still be around come the next World Cup.
Henry Slade for Stephen Myler
Again, it looks like Myler’s time with England is up, and who better to replace him with than Henry Slade who is being touted as the cornerstone of England’s backline.
Elliot Daly for Brad Barritt
If Jones is to adopt a more expansive style of rugby then it is likely to signal the end of Barritt’s time with England, and who better to replace him with than Daly?
This would leave the EPS looking something like this…
David Wilson -> Kieran Brookes
Graham Kitchener -> Courtney Lawes
Geoff Parling -> Joe Launchbury
Calum Clark -> Will Fraser/Matt Kvesic
Nick Easter -> Ben Morgan
James Haskell -> Maro Itoje
Richard Wigglesworth -> Joe Simpson
Stephen Myler -> Henry Slade
Brad Barritt -> Elliot Daly
Billy Twelvetrees -> Jamie George