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England name 25-man squad

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England name 25-man squad for Wales test

England head coach Eddie Jones has retained 25 players to continue their preparation ahead of Saturday’s Guinness Six Nations match against Wales in Cardiff.

Maro Itoje will remain at PennyHill Park this week to continue with his rehabilitation.

Earlier on Tuesday the Saracens flanker was ruled out of the Wales game. He’s failed to recover after injuring medial ligaments during England’s 32-20 win over Ireland at the Aviva on matchday one.

He was initially expected to miss the rest of the tournament, but the England camp had express positive noises in the build-up to Saturday’s game with Wales at the Principality Stadium, which has been billed as the Grand Slam decider.

in the aftermath of England’s 44-8 win over France at Twickenham head coach Eddie Jones refused to rule out Itoje’s return in time for the Wales clash, while on Monday England defence coach John Mitchell said the Saracens club man was “progressing nicely”.

Forwards coach Steve Borthwick told Sky Sports that he was “not quite ready” to face Wales.

“He continues to rehab day-by-day. He is not going to be available for Saturday’s game. So you are always looking to the future and the timelines of progression is day-by-day. He is doing well, but not quite ready for Saturday.”

Asked whether he’d be ready to return for the Italy game Borthwick said: “I expect him to continue to be monitored on a day-by-day basis and progress. he is not fit for this Saturday and right now I am not looking beyond that.

It means that England are likely to stick with the second row combination of Courtney Lawes and George Kruis for the game with Wales, with Joe Launchbury on the bench.

Dan Cole, Ben Earl, Charlie Ewels, Alec Hepburn, Jack Singleton are the forwards who drop out from the initial 33-amn squad, while in the backs Mike Brown, Ollie Devoto, Ollie Thornley also miss out.

Forwards
Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter Chiefs)
Tom Curry (Sale Sharks)
Ellis Genge (Leicester Tigers)
Jamie George (Saracens)
Nathan Hughes (Wasps)
George Kruis (Saracens)
Joe Launchbury (Wasps)
Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints)
Ben Moon (Exeter Chiefs)
Brad Shields (Wasps)
Kyle Sinckler (Harlequins)
Billy Vunipola (Saracens)
Harry Williams (Exeter Chiefs)
Mark Wilson (Newcastle Falcons)

Backs
Joe Cokanasiga (Bath Rugby)
Elliot Daly (Wasps)
Owen Farrell (Saracens) captain
George Ford (Leicester Tigers)
Jonny May (Leicester Tigers)
Jack Nowell (Exeter Chiefs)
Dan Robson (Wasps)
Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs)
Ben Te’o (Worcester Warriors)
Manu Tuilagi (Leicester Tigers)
Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers)

Watch: Eddie Jones “We are playing the greatest Welsh side ever”

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England name 25-man squad for Wales test