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England & Wales make changes ahead of crucial U20 World Championship clash

England face Wales in their second match of the World Rugby U20 Championship tomorrow, and Head Coach Jon Callard has made four changes to the side that beat Japan on Tuesday.

It was an impressive 59-7 victory on Tuesday, the perfect start to England’s defence of the title they have held for the last two years, however things are likely to be much tougher in tomorrow’s 19.30 kick off (Live on BT Sport) as Wales have already beaten England this year, a 21-12 victory in the U20 6 Nations.

Former Wellington College star Seb Adeniran-Olule of Harlequins comes in at tighthead for Bristol’s Ellis Genge, who will be on the bench. In the back row Exeter Chiefs’ Sam Skinner starts at number 8 ahead of James Chisholm, whith late call up Josh Bainbridge coming onto the bench.

Meanwhile in the second row the former John Fisher pupil Kieran Treadwell replaces last week’s debutant Will Witty, meaning that Treadwell will resume his successful second row partnership from the 6 Nations with captain Charlie Ewels.

There is just one change in the backline, Northampton Saints’ Howard Packman, part of last year’s triumphant side, replaces Tom Howe on the left wing.

Reflecting on Wales’ win back in the 6 Nations, Head Coach Jon Callard said:

“Wales played very well that day. We weren’t on our game and they forced a lot of errors.  We learned a huge amount from that experience and have since progressed from strength to strength. Wales, however, will also have developed throughout the Six Nations so we know that tomorrow will be a tough fixture.”

England go into the game top of the group ahead of France, who beat Wales 19-10 last time out, making this one crucial for the Welsh, as Callard acknowleged:

“A team always hurts after a defeat, in this competition every game matters because of the format, but for us it is about staying composed and keeping to our processes.”

“Howard Packman and Kieran Treadwell add further experience to the side and were stalwarts of the Six Nations. We have a full squad to pick from, everyone is fit and raring to go, so we need to manage and rotate players in what is a long and demanding campaign.”

“We are fortunate to have an excellent management team – the medical staff and our Strength and Conditioning Coach Neil Taylor have done an excellent job getting the players into top physical condition and enabling them to acclimatise and cope with the heat.  We had a fantastic training session yesterday and are looking forward to turning the hard work into a positive performance tomorrow.”

Wales meanwhile have made two changes to their side, bringing in Pontypridd’s Jarrod Evans at fly half and Cardiff Blues’ flanker Liam Belcher.

Coach co-ordinator Allan Lewis said:

“We have strength in depth in these positions which gives us a chance to give these players a start in what is another huge game. It is obvious that we made too many fundamental errors against France which you can’t afford to do at this level. Even though we got back into the game, we weren’t able to build any continuity to our performance and that cost us.”

“England have a powerful pack, we know their strengths and weaknesses and although they are champions at this level, teams change every year at this age and we beat them in the Six Nations so we know we can win if we perform as we did in Colwyn Bay.”

“We have trained well, but our priority is to play as we’ve trained. If we do that, and are accurate and clinical, as we know we can be from some of our Six Nations performances, then the result will take care of itself.”

England U20 v Wales U20 – Stadio San Michele, Calvisano, Saturday, 19.30 (BT Sport 1)

England U20 XV

15 Aaron Morris (Saracens)

14 George Perkins (Saracens)

13 Nick Tompkins (Saracens)

12 Max Clark (Bath)

11. Howard Packman (Northampton Saints)

10 Rory Jennings (Bath)

9 Stuart Townsend (Exeter Chiefs)

1. Sebastian Adeniran-Olule (Harlequins)

2 Jack Walker (Yorkshire Carnegie)

3 Paul Hill (Yorkshire Carnegie)

4. Kieran Treadwell (Harlequins)

5 Charlie Ewels (Bath, Captain)

6 Lewis Ludlam (Northampton Saints)

7 Will Owen (Leicester Tigers)

8. Sam Skinner (Exeter Chiefs)

Replacements:

16 Jack Innard (Exeter Chiefs)

17. Ellis Genge (Bristol)

18 Ciaran Parker (Sale Sharks)

19. Will Witty (Newcastle Falcons)

20. Josh Bainbridge (Yorkshire Carnegie)

21 James Mitchell (Sale Sharks)

22 Lloyd Evans (Gloucester)

23 Piers O’Conor (Wasps)

Wales U20 XV

15 Dafydd Howells (Ospreys)

14 Lloyd Lewis (Dragons)

13 Garyn Smith (Blues)

12 Owen Watkin (Ospreys)

11 Joshua Adams (Scarlets)

10 Jarrod Evans (Blues)

9 Tomos Williams (Blues)

8 Luke Garrett (Dragons)

7 Liam Belcher (Blues)

6 Dillon Lewis (Blues)

5 Adam Beard (Ospreys)

4 Rory Thornton (Ospreys, captain)

3 Tom Phillips (Scarlets)

2 Ollie Griffiths (Dragons)

1 Harrison Keddie (Dragons)

Replacements:

16 Ryan Elias (Scarlets)

17 Keagan Bale (Dragons)

18 Joe Jones (Blues)

19 Jon Fox (Ospreys)

20 Seb Davies (Blues)

21 Kieran Hardy (Scarlets)

22 Daniel Jones (Scarlets)

23 Barney Nightingale (Dragons)

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