England U20 have named their side for the 2014 IRB Junior World Championship final against South Africa, and have selected the same fifteen that beat Ireland in the semi final.
It is little wonder, they dismissed of Ireland in spectacular fashion, winning 42-15 to seal their place in the final and with it a chance to become the first side bar the Junior All Blacks to retain the coveted JWC trophy.
There are two players in the starting fifteen that started in last yearâ€™s triumph over Wales, Harry Sloan at inside centre, and Ross Moriarty on the blindside flank. They are supported by loosehead prop Danny Hobbs-Awoyemi, who was on the bench last year, as well as Henry Purdy who starts from the bench, as he did in last yearâ€™s triumph.
Joel Conlon and squad captain Callum Braley (Maro Itoje captains the team tomorrow) were both in the squad last season and will be on the bench for this one. The experience of those six players will be absolutely vital, be it from the start, from the bench or even in the build up to the game as they help the rest of the squad through the pressure that a final brings.
England gave been desperately trying to disassociate themselves from last yearâ€™s triumph â€“ stating that that was a different teamâ€™s success and that they are only concentrating on creating their own history, however the experience of last year will doubtless be a huge factor tomorrow.
South Africa are not without their own JWC experience, fly half and captain Handre Pollard is at his third Championship and played a strong role in South Africaâ€™s triumph on home soil in 2012 â€“ he is one player in this yearâ€™s JWC who is strongly tipped for future success, and is one of four players on the shortlist for the IRB Junior World Player of the Year.
Joining him on that list are Irelandâ€™s Garry Ringrose, New Zealandâ€™s Tevita Li, and Englandâ€™s own Nathan Earle, who starts on the left wing tomorrow.
Speaking ahead of tomorrowâ€™s final, which kicks off at 08.35 BST at Eden Park and is on Live on Sky Sports 1, England Head Coach Nick Walshe said:
â€œThis is a great opportunity for our guys â€“ they have been excellent all trip and have fully deserved to get to where they are.â€
â€œSouth Africa will be a difficult challenge, but weâ€™re focusing on ourselves â€“ weâ€™re putting a real emphasis on performing for the full 80 minutes, we feel that we have played well in patches throughout the tournament but we want to see a complete performance.â€
IRB JWC Final â€“ England U20 v South Africa U20, Friday, 08.35, Sky Sports 1.
England U20Â XV
15 Aaron Morris (Bedford Blues)â€¨ 14 Howard Packman (Northampton Saints) â€¨13 Nick Tompkins (Saracens)â€¨ 12 Harry Sloan (Harlequins) 11 Nathan Earle (Saracens)â€¨ 10 Billy Burns (Gloucester) â€¨9 Henry Taylor (Loughborough University);Â 1 Danny Hobbs-Awoyemi (Northampton Saints) 2 Tom Woolstencroft (Bath)â€¨ 3 Paul Hill (Leeds Carnegie)â€¨ 4 Maro Itoje (Saracens, captain)â€¨ 5 Charlie Ewels (Bath)â€¨ 6 Ross Moriarty (Gloucester) 7 Gus Jones (London Wasps)â€¨ 8 James Chisholm (Harlequins).
Replacements:Â 16 Jack Walker (Leeds Carnegie) â€¨17 Alex Lundberg (London Wasps) â€¨18 Biyi Alo (Saracens) â€¨19 Hayden Thompson-Stringer (Saracens)â€¨ 20 Joel Conlon (Exeter Chiefs)â€¨ 21 Callum Braley (Bristol) 22 Sam Olver (Northampton Saints)â€¨ 23 Henry Purdy (Leicester Tigers).
South Africa U20 XV
15 Warrick GelantÂ 14 Dan KrielÂ 13 Jesse KrielÂ 12 Andre EsterhuizenÂ 11 Sergeal PetersenÂ 10 Handre Pollard (captain)Â 9 JP Smith;Â 1 Thomas Du ToitÂ 2 Corniel ElsÂ 3 Dayan Van Der WesthuizenÂ 4 JD Schickerling 5 Nico Janse Van RensburgÂ 6 Jacques VermeulenÂ 7 Cyle BrinkÂ 8 Aidon Davis.
Replacements: 16 Joseph DwehaÂ 17 Pierre SchoemanÂ 18 Wilco LouwÂ 19 Victor SekeketeÂ 20 Jean Luc Du PreezÂ 21 Zee MkhabelaÂ 22 Jean Luc Du PlessisÂ 23 Duhan Van Der Merwe.