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Preview – Wales v England

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Saturdays test against Wales will not just be a step closer to secure the Six Nations Championship but also a Grand Slam for England.

Nobody can argue that England has been massive impressive so far in the Six Nations with massive wins against Ireland and France.

They have been clinical in all aspects of their game but there defence has been a step up from last year. They have also scored two bonus point wins from the first two test as well.

Wales have gone almost unnoticed along with also two wins out of two but without the bonus points so are two points behind England.

Eddie Jones have made two changes to the side that beat France with Joe Cokanasiga and Brad Shields included in the match-day 23 for the first time this tournament while Ellis Genge and Harry Williams are also named among the replacements.

Owen Farrell will again captain the side.

England and Wales is always a big game,” said Jones. “Intense rivals and there is the historical context to it, but for us it is our most important game because it is our next game and that is how we are treating it.

“As you have read in the media, it’s all about Wales, we are playing potentially the greatest team ever. Their players are full of emotion and it’s the biggest game they are going to play in their lives. We have had a good week just focussing on ourselves and focussing on getting our preparation right.”

Wales coach Warren Gatland has gone with Gareth Anscombe at fly-half ahead of Dan Biggar.

Gareth Davies will be his number nine with Hadleigh Parkes and Jonathan Davies partnering again in the midfield. Josh Adams, George North and Liam Williams make up the back-three.

Captain Alun Wyn Jones returns to lead the side.

We are really happy with the experience we have got in the side,” said Gatland. “We have been on the road for the first two weeks, we are looking forward to being back at home and to build on those first two wins and to build on our performance.

“We’ve had a great two-week lead up to this game, we’ve looked really sharp and the squad are incredibly motivated to kick on.

“We know how important this game is for the rest of the championship. It’s a massive challenge playing against an England team that is playing really well and with a lot of confidence and we’ve got to make it difficult for them on Saturday.

This is going to be a massive test..

Teams:

Wales: 15 Liam Williams, 14 George North, 13 Jonathan Davies, 12 Hadleigh Parkes, 11 Josh Adams, 10 Gareth Anscombe, 9 Gareth Davies, 8 Ross Moriarty, 7 Justin Tipuric, 6 Josh Navidi, 5 Alun Wyn Jones (c), 4 Cory Hill, 3 Tomas Francis, 2 Ken Owens, 1 Rob Evans
Replacements: 16 Elliot Dee, 17 Nicky Smith, 18 Dillon Lewis, 19 Adam Beard, 20 Aaron Wainwright, 21 Aled Davies, 22 Dan Biggar, 23 Owen Watkin

England: 15 Elliot Daly, 14 Jack Nowell, 13 Henry Slade, 12 Manu Tuilagi, 11 Jonny May, 10 Owen Farrell (c), 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Billy Vunipola, 7 Tom Curry, 6 Mark Wilson, 5 George Kruis, 4 Courtney Lawes, 3 Kyle Sinckler, 2 Jamie George, 1 Ben Moon
Replacements: 16 Luke Cowan-Dickie, 17 Ellis Genge, 18 Harry Williams, 19 Joe Launchbury, 20 Brad Shields, 21 Dan Robson, 22 George Ford, 23 Joe Cokanasiga

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