Joseph on wing as England ring changes for Ireland Six Nations clash

by Julian GUYER
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Jonathan Joseph has been moved to the left wing for England's Six Nations clash against Ireland

England have reshuffled their back division for Sunday's pivotal Six Nations clash against Ireland at Twickenham, with coach Eddie Jones moving Jonathan Joseph to the left wing and Elliot Daly returning to full-back.

Jones said, after announcing his team, that full-back George Furbank had been left out after suffering a recurrence of a longstanding hip and groin problem, with his absence leading to changes in England's back three.

Ben Youngs is set to win his 100th Test cap after being recalled to England's starting side along with Leicester team-mate Manu Tuilagi.

Powerhouse centre Tuilagi moves into midfield, filling the vacancy left by Joseph, best known as a centre. Joseph, who will be winning his 50th cap, takes the wing position left by Daly's move to full-back.

Both Daly and Joseph can expect plenty of aerial bombardment from an Ireland side renowned for their skill under the high ball.

Courtney Lawes was moved to blindside flanker, with George Kruis partnering Saracens team-mate Maro Itoje in the second row.

Up front, Joe Marler comes in for Mako Vunipola, absent for family reasons, at loosehead prop.

Tuilagi missed England's 13-6 Calcutta Cup win over Scotland last time out with the minor groin problem that forced him off early in England's opening loss to France in Paris.

Scrum-half Youngs will be making his 100th international appearance this weekend, with his 98th England cap adding to two Tests for the British and Irish Lions.

Ireland coach Andy Farrell, the father of England captain Owen Farrell, was forced into making a late alteration Friday when lock Iain Henderson withdrew for family reasons.

Farrell, who had initially named an unchanged side on Wednesday, promoted Devin Toner off the bench with Ultan Dillane brought in as replacement second-row cover.

Victory for World Cup finalists England would deny Ireland the Triple Crown and put Jones's men firmly back in contention for the Six Nations title.

"Ireland are a very good team, extremely well-coached. They are a team we respect a lot," Jones said Friday as he cited the threat posed by half-backs Conor Murray and Jonathan Sexton.

"Murray and Sexton, who have played 170 Tests between them, at nine and 10 will manage the game well," added the Australian. "We've got to make sure we match their physicality and their emotion on the weekend."

England (15-1)

Elliot Daly; Jonny May, Manu Tuilagi, Owen Farrell (capt), Jonathan Joseph; George Ford, Ben Youngs; Tom Curry, Sam Underhill, Courtney Lawes; George Kruis, Maro Itoje; Kyle Sinckler, Jamie George, Joe Marler

Replacements: Luke Cowan-Dickie, Ellis Genge, Will Stuart, Joe Launchbury, Charlie Ewels, Ben Earl, Willi Heinz, Henry Slade

Coach: Eddie Jones (AUS)

Jonathan Joseph has been moved to the left wing for England's Six Nations clash against Ireland

England's Ben Youngs is set to win his 100th Test cap