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England U18 name side to face France

By RFU Press Office - Issued by Simon Mills
February 18 2010

England U18 name side to face France ENGLAND Under 18 return to action on Sunday against the only side to have dented their impressive 14-match winning run.

England U18 name side to face France 

England U18 Coach - John Fletcher
England U18 head coach John Fletcher 

England U18 v France at Newbury, Sunday, 3pm

ENGLAND Under 18 return to action on Sunday against the only side to have dented their impressive 14-match winning run.

England, coached by John Fletcher and Peter Walton, haven't been beaten in an international at this level since an 11-3 defeat against Australia in Brisbane in 2007.

But France - visitors to Newbury this weekend - edged past them in a training game last season and will threaten all over the field, according to former Newcastle Falcons boss Fletcher.

Fly half George Ford (Rishworth & Leicester Tigers) leads the side at Monks Lane and Fletcher makes seven changes to the team that beat Australian Schools 30-28 at Sale in December.

Injured Dulwich College and Harlequins lock Sam Twomey (knee) and Harrow and London Wasps flanker Billy Vunipola are replaced by George Merrick (Whitgift & Harlequins) and Will Skuse (Bryanston & Bath Rugby) respectively, while props Luke Cowan-Dickie (Truro Coll & Exeter Chiefs) and Anthony Brennan (Twyford CofE & London Wasps) make their first starts.

In the backline, Joel Hodgson (RGS Newcastle & Newcastle Falcons) takes over at scrum half, Ryan Mills (Hartpury Coll & Gloucester) comes in at inside centre and Charlie Walker (Oakham & Leicester Tigers) on the left wing.

"We played France last year in a training game - three 20 minute periods - and they beat us by a point after we'd scored three tries each," said head coach Fletcher.

"They'll be tough - big aggressive forwards, quick backs. We know what they'll throw at us and last year they were very strong at Under 17 level."

England, though, are buoyant after their last outing, when replacement wing Tommy Bell finished off a superb 80 metre attack to secure victory over an older Australian side at Heywood Road.

Fletcher added: "We try and develop players to play a game with a lot of threats, no matter what the opposition do. Wherever they're looking to defend we look to score somewhere else, driving, kicking, moving the ball wide.

"The current squad are a good bunch. There's hardly any carry over from last year so it takes time for a new squad to gel but they've come together well and that showed in the game they played against Australia. Scoring right at the end to win such a good game was really good for their spirit and morale."

15 Ben Ransom (Tonbridge & Saracens)
14 Marland Yarde (Whitgift & London Irish)
13 Elliot Daly (Whitgift & London Wasps)
12 Ryan Mills (Hartpury Coll & Gloucester)
11 Charlie Walker (Oakham & Leicester Tigers)
10 George Ford (Rishworth & Leicester Tigers, Captain)
9 Joel Hodgson (RGS Newcastle & Newcastle Falcons)
1 Luke Cowan-Dickie (Truro Coll & Exeter Chiefs)
2 Koree Britton (Ivybridge Coll & Exeter Chiefs)
3 Anthony Brennan (Twyford CofE & London Wasps)
4 George Merrick (Whitgift & Harlequins)
5 Dominic Barrow (Prince Henry's GS Otley & Leeds Carnegie) 
6 Will Skuse (Bryanston & Bath Rugby)
7 Chris Walker (Prince Henry's GS Otley & Leeds Carnegie)
8 Matt Kvesic (Worcester Sixth Form Coll & Worcester Warriors)

16 Nick Auterac (Oaklands Coll & Saracens)
17 Nathan Morris (Sedbergh & Newcastle Falcons)
18 Kyle Sinckler (Epsom Coll & Harlequins)
19 Will Spencer (St Paul's Catholic Coll & London Wasps)
20 Sam Northcote-Green (Dulwich Coll & London Wasps)
21 Dan Robson (Hartpury Coll & Gloucester Rugby)
22 Jamie Elliott (Bedford & Northampton Saints)
23 Mark Jennings (Lymm HS & Sale Sharks)

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England U18 name side to face France
Unofficial England Rugby Union (IP Logged)
18/02/2010 14:09
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Yarde strikes twice as England U18 beat France
England News (IP Logged)
21/02/2010 19:00
Yarde strikes twice as England U18 beat France
Sunday February 21, 2010
Issued by Simon Mills
England U18 wing Marland Yarde

England U18 33 France U18 16

Marland Yarde ran in the two decisive tries as England's Under 18s overpowered France to extend their unbeaten international run to 14 games at Newbury.

The Whitgift and London Irish wing struck twice in seven second-half minutes as England killed off the visitors with lock Dominic Barrow (Prince Henry's Otley & Leeds Carnegie), centre Elliot Daly (Whitgift & London Wasps) and wing Charlie Walker (Oakham & Leicester Tigers) also touching down.

Captain George Ford (Rishworth & Leicester Tigers) added four conversions as well as running the show from fly half, setting up Yarde's first score with a slashing break through the middle and prompting his second with a well-placed chip for the corner.

Ilian Perraux replied with two first-half penalties and wing Yohan Artru scored two second-half tries as France briefly held a 16-14 lead.

But England had too much energy, ambition and adventure to resist, emphasised by their ability to strike twice with 14 men on the field in the first half and willingness to keep on attacking rather than sit on a lead late in the game.

England, coached by John Fletcher and Peter Walton, trailed to two early penalties from Perraux and then lost tight head Anthony Brennan to the sin-bin in the 18th minute after conceding three penalties at the scrum.

But the Brennan yellow card simply spurred England into increasing the tempo and transforming early enterprise into points on the board.

Two tries followed, both from turnovers, with lively scrum half Joel Hodgson (RGS Newcastle & Newcastle Falcons) twice involved in the sweeping 23rd minute move before Barrow cantered home from 15 metres.

Ford converted from in front of the posts and then added the extra points after France were pressured into fumbling the ball in midfield with Daly striking from half way.

France responded after the break and when England spilled the ball in midfield they drove down the right and then back left with hooker Raphael Carbou involved before Artru scorched into the left-hand corner.

The visitors were 16-14 in front when Artru scored his second six minutes later from 60 metres after picking off a pass from an ambitious England attack.

But Yarde ended any chance of an upset by cutting inside to finish off the chance created by Ford's burst up the middle and he was then on hand to dribble the fly half's kick ahead over the line for a second 10 minutes from time.

Instead of tightening up, England kept on attacking with replacement centre Jamie Elliott weaving half the length of the field before handing off for Leicester wing Walker to dive over and celebrate in style.

England U18:
Ben Ransom (Tonbridge & Saracens); Marland Yarde (Whitgift & London Irish), Elliot Daly (Whitgift & London Wasps), Ryan Mills (Hartpury Coll & Gloucester), Charlie Walker (Oakham & Leicester Tigers); George Ford (Rishworth & Leicester Tigers, Captain), Joel Hodgson (RGS Newcastle & Newcastle Falcons); Luke Cowan-Dickie (Truro Coll & Exeter Chiefs), Koree Britton (Ivybridge Coll & Exeter Chiefs), Anthony Brennan (Twyford CofE & London Wasps), George Merrick (Whitgift & Harlequins), Dominic Barrow (Prince Henry's GS Otley & Leeds Carnegie), Will Skuse (Bryanston & Bath Rugby), Chris Walker (Prince Henry's GS Otley & Leeds Carnegie), Matt Kvesic (Worcester Sixth Form Coll & Worcester Warriors).

Nick Auterac (Oaklands Coll & Saracens), Nathan Morris (Sedbergh & Newcastle Falcons), Kyle Sinckler (Epsom Coll & Harlequins), Will Spencer (St Paul's Catholic Coll & London Irish), Sam Northcote-Green (Dulwich Coll & London Wasps), Charlie Gordon (Wellington Coll & London Wasps), Jamie Elliott (Bedford & Northampton Saints), Mark Jennings (Lymm HS & Sale Sharks)

Scorers: Tries: Yarde 2, Barrow, Daly, Charlie Walker. Conversions: Ford 4.

France U18: Maxime Payen (Toulouse); Vincent Martin (Toulon), Bastien Fuster (Aviron Bayonnais), Jonathan Danty (Stade Francais), Yohan Artru (MHRC); Ilian Perraux (MHRC), Tom Ecochard (USAP); Sebastien Taofifenoua (USAP), Raphael Carbou (Narbonne), Julien Moretto (Agen), Bastien Chalureau (Toulouse), Pierre Gayraud (USAP, Captain), Kevin Boukechiche (Nancy), Julien Kazubek (Clermont Auvergne), Karl Chateau (Tours).

Replacements: Kevin Firmin (Tours), Florian Fresia (Toulon), Cherif Slimani (Stade Francais), Andrew Chauveau (CABBG), Jules Lebail (Nantes), Kelian Galletier (MHRC), Mathieu Ugalde (Aviron Bayonnais), Jean-Bernard Pujol (Toulouse).

Scorers: Tries: Artru 2. Penalties: Perraux 2.

Referee: David Wilkinson (IRFU)

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2010:02:22:07:30:43 by England News.

England U18 reaction from John Fletcher, Marland Yarde, George Ford and Matt Kvesic
England News (IP Logged)
22/02/2010 07:28
England Under 18 boss John Fletcher saw his team run in five tries against France and insisted: "We can still play better".

The side coached by Fletcher and Peter Walton extended their winning run to 14 successive internationals since the summer of 2007 with the 33-16 victory at Newbury.

Two tries came from Whitgift & London Irish wing Marland Yarde with one each for lock Dominic Barrow (Prince Henry's Otley & Leeds Carnegie), centre Elliot Daly (Whitgift & London Wasps) and wing Charlie Walker (Oakham & Leicester Tigers).

Captain George Ford (Rishworth & Leicester Tigers) added four conversions and created both of Yarde's scores, the first with a slashing break through the middle and the second with a kick behind France's midfield defenders.

JOHN FLETCHER said: "We took France on, tried to move the ball around and overall I'm delighted.

"We try to challenge the players and everyone involved in the squad has bought into it. Occasionally we'll make mistakes but you've got to have the confidence to keep on trying things.

"To score five tries against a physical French side is pretty good and we left another two or three out there. I'm delighted - but we can play better.

"Marland Yarde took his chances well. He's got a great deal of pace and you need to have that in any team. We've got several other boys who've got that too.

"In the second half we needed to lift what we were doing and George Ford managed the game well."

GEORGE FORD said: "Our philosophy is always to have a go and while we made some mistakes in the first half we were clinical enough to go and score three tries in the second half.

"The physicality was right up there and we worked massively hard in the forwards and at the rucks and that gave us the platform to play.

"We defended quite well too - they scored from a couple of turnovers but we wanted to keep them out and did that for the rest of the game.

"My break up the middle [for Yarde's first try] I put down to the people outside me letting me know what was on. We put two tries away and although they made it tough we found a way to get through it and play."

MARLAND YARDE said: "It was a very tough game against the French and we had to dig very deep against all their big lads.

"In the second half we kept working hard and the guys on the outside like me got good ball but it's all down to the work of your teammates.

"We don't want to play a restricted game. We want to play exciting rugby and that's ideal if you're a winger. It's all about playing with pace and energy and to wear the Rose with pride."

Worcester Warriors flanker MATT KVESIC added: "We went into the game with a really positive attitude, to play some rugby and put some points on them.

"We didn't want to be scared and John Fletcher and Peter Walton have given us that mentality to keep on playing.

"France came out and put us under a pressure a bit but the game is all about momentum and we just kept on building."

England U18 unbeaten run details
England News (IP Logged)
22/02/2010 07:31
The run actually stands at 14 successive victories since they were beaten 11-3 by Australian Schools in Brisbane in July 2007.The full list is as follows:

Feb 3, 2008: England 25 Wales 15 (at Worcester)
Feb 26, 2008: England 78 Italy 8 (Temple Hill, Cork)
Mar 29, 2008: England 18 France 0 (Cork Institute)
Apr 1, 2008: England 32 Scotland 5 (Musgrave Park, Cork)
Jul 30, 2008: Uruguay 7 England 94 (Buenos Aires)
Aug 3, 2008: Argentina 20 England 48 (Buenos Aires)
Mar 22, 2009: England 63 Scotland 0 (Newcastle)
Mar 29, 2009: England 71 Japan High Schools 7 (Exeter)
Apr 12, 2009: England 61 Italy 3 (Viadana)
Apr 15, 2009: England 75 Scotland 0 (Viadana)
Apr 26, 2009: Wales 23 England 36 (Ebbw Vale)
Aug 7, 2009: South Africa 13 England 45 (Kimberley)
Dec 13, 2009: England 30 Australian Schools 28 (Sale)
Feb 21, 2010: England 33 France 16 (Newbury)

England U18 have also won five tour games in the same period, beating Tucuman, Buenos Aires and Mendoza in Argentina in 2008 and Boland and Western Province in South Africa in 2009.

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