It is the first salvo of the 2012 Six Nations when the second teams of England , the Saxons, and Ireland, the Wolfhounds, meet at Sandy Park in Exeter on Saturday. Both teams are a mixture of youth and experience.
Jon Callard, the Saxons' coach, says: “It is a new era for us. There’s a lot of youth and energy in this squad and we'll go into the game with a ‘no fear’ attitude
“We want to see the players express themselves and at the same time develop the streak of pragmatism you need to win big games. we've seen in Europe the strength of Irish at the moment but the challenge motivates and excites us.”
Ireland Wolfhounds coach Eric Elwood said: "The games against the Saxons are always highly competitive affairs as you would expect and results have tended to go with the home side, but I think we have a good mix in our side and the key message is that we have to match them on all fronts, especially in the physical stakes, to come away with a win.
"I would expect a really good atmosphere for the game and I know the players are looking forward to it."
England Saxons: 15 Delon Armitage (London Irish), 14 Ugo Monye (Harlequins), 13 Matt Hopper (Harlequins), 12 Billy Twelvetrees (Leicester Tigers), 11 Matt Banahan (Bath), 10 Freddie Burns (Gloucester), 9 Ben Spencer (Saracens), 8 Thomas Waldrom (Leicester Tigers), 7 Andy Saull (Saracens), 6 James Gaskell (Sale Sharks) (captain), 5 George Robson (Harlequins), 4 Matt Garvey (London Irish), 3 Paul Doran-Jones (Northampton Saints), 2 Joe Gray (Harlequins), 1 Matt Mullan (Worcester Warriors).
Replacements: 16 Chris Brooker (Harlequins), 17 Rupert Harden (Gloucester), 18 Kearnan Myall (Sale Sharks), 19 Tom Johnson (Exeter Chiefs), 20 Paul Hodgson (London Irish), 21 Ryan Lamb (Northampton Saints), 22 Jonny May (Gloucester).
Ireland Wolfhounds: 15 Gavin Duffy (Galwegians & Connacht), 14 David Kearney (Lansdowne & Leinster), 13 Eoin O'Malley (Old Belvedere & Leinster), 12 Nevin Spence (Ballynahinch & Ulster), 11 Simon Zebo (Cork Constitution & Munster), 10 Ian Keatley (Young Munster & Munster), 9 Isaac Boss (Terenure College & Leinster), 8 Rhys Ruddock (St Mary's College & Leinster), 7 Chris Henry (Ballymena & Ulster) (captain), 6 John Muldoon (Galwegians & Connacht), 5 Mike McCarthy (Buccaneers & Connacht), 4 Dan Tuohy (Ballymena & Ulster), 3 Stephen Archer (Cork Constitution & Munster), 2 Damien Varley (Garryowen & Munster), 1 Brett Wilkinson (Galwegians & Connacht).
Replacements: 16 Mike Sherry (Garryowen & Munster), 17 Ronan Loughney (Galwegians & Connacht), 18 Devin Toner (Lansdowne & Leinster), 19 Kevin McLaughlin (St Mary's College & Leinster), 20 Tomas O'Leary (Dolphin & Munster), 21 Ian Madigan (Blackrock College & Leinster), 22 Denis Hurley (Cork Constitution & Munster).
Date: Saturday, 28 January 2012
Venue: Sandy Park, Exeter
Referee: Mathieu Raynal (France)
Gilbert has released a new line of rugby cleats. The Gilbert Virtuo 8S is part of the exciting new product. Check it out.
The Barbarians are one of the top invitational rugby sides with a long history and classic rugby jersey.
The Nike Tiempo is a solid rugby cleat and one of few styles still made from full-grain natural leather.
The Lions get ready for their matches with this green training jersey. It's what the players wear. Get in the Gear!
A cool looking all black rugby cleat with the high performance adidas is known for. Get in the Gear!
Wear the crest of the British and Irish Lions on your t-shirt. A great look for the summer.
The Lions are ready to get their Australia tour underway. They arrive in Perth on Monday.
The New Zealand All Blacks training jersey for 2013/14. Get in the Gear!
The USA Rugby Pro Alternate rugby jersey is perfect for any fan of the Eagles. Get yours to wear during the summer Test matches.
The NEW All Blacks 2013/14 jersey has arrived at World Rugby Shop. Dare to wear the colors of the All Blacks.