AFP

Nathan Hughes, Marland Yarde to start for England against Australia

Hughes, Yarde to start for England against Australia
By Reuters

01/12/2016 at 19:27

Nathan Hughes and Marland Yarde will start England's final test of the autumn series against Australia at Twickenham on Saturday in two forced changes to the lineup that beat Argentina last weekend.

Nathan Hughes and Marland Yarde will start England's final test of the autumn series against Australia at Twickenham on Saturday in two forced changes to the lineup that beat Argentina last weekend.

Fiji-born forward Hughes replaces Billy Vunipola, who has been sidelined by knee surgery, for his full test debut at number eight after winning two caps this autumn as a replacement.

"It's a big test for him, first time to start for England," head coach Eddie Jones told reporters. "It's a wonderful opportunity for him. It's more about the fact that everyone in the team's got to pick up the slack.

"It's not one person that's got to fill Billy's boots," he added.

"We know he's an influential player but Nathan's a very good player in his own right. But it will be up to everyone on the field to pick up a little bit more."

Winger Yarde gets the nod over Semesa Rokoduguni for the spot vacated by Elliot Daly, who was banned for three weeks after being sent off for a dangerous tackle in Saturday's 27-14 win over Argentina.

Rokoduguni scored two tries on his return to test rugby in a man-of-the-match performance against Fiji but was dropped from the squad to face the Pumas after being told he had to improve aspects of his game.

"I like a winger with pace and I like a winger with work rate," said Jones. "And Marland's work rate is fantastic, he's an interesting boy...he's up and down, and he's up at the moment. So it's a good place to be for Saturday."

England are seeking a fourth successive win over the Wallabies -- after a 3-0 whitewash in June -- to close out the year unbeaten and with a record-equalling 14th successive test victory.

"The great thing about our team is that no-one is irreplaceable," said Jones. "We've had seven influential players missing throughout the autumn but we've been able to fill that gap and that's the sort of team we are developing.

"We want to finish off with our best performance of the year," he added. "It's a great opportunity for us to take another step forward."

Team:

1-Mako Vunipola 2-Dylan Hartley (captain), 3-Dan Cole, 4-Courtney Lawes, 5-George Kruis, 6-Chris Robshaw, 7-Tom Wood, 8-Nathan Hughes, 9-Ben Youngs, 10-George Ford, 11-Jonny May, 12-Owen Farrell, 13-Jonathan Joseph, 14-Marland Yarde, 15-Mike Brown.

Replacements:

16-Jamie George, 17-Joe Marler, 18-Kyle Sinckler, 19-Charlie Ewels, 20-Teimana Harrison, 21-Danny Care, 22-Ben Te'o, 23-Henry Slade.

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