Hartley to captain England in Argentina



Dylan Hartley will captain England for their tour to Argentina after being left out of the Lions squad.

The Northampton hooker, who saw his understudy Jamie George being picked as one of the three hooker options by Warren Gatland yesterday, will lead the 31-man squad named by Eddie Jones today.

The squad includes 15 uncapped players with props Will Collier (Harlequins) and Harry Williams (Exeter Chiefs) included as well as second-row Nick Isiekwe (Saracens), flanker Sam Underhill (Ospreys/Bath Rugby) and twins Ben and Tom Curry (both Sale Sharks).

In the backs scrum-half Jack Maunder (Exeter Chiefs) receives his first senior call-up alongside fly-half Piers Francis (Auckland Blues/Northampton Saints), backs Alex Lozowski (Saracens) and Harry Mallinder (Northampton Saints), centres Joe Marchant (Harlequins), and Sam James (Sale Sharks) as well as wings Denny Solomona (Sale Sharks), Nathan Earle (Saracens) and Joe Cokanasiga (London Irish).

The squad will assemble at The Lensbury on Sunday, May 29 to begin their preparations for the two-Test tour which sees England play at in San Juan on Saturday, June 10 and in Sante Fe on Saturday, June 17.

Jones has made a number of enforced changes to the coaching set-up to compensate for Steve Borthwick’s absence on the British & Irish Lions tour to New Zealand. Jones will take responsibility of the forwards, supported by scrum coach Neal Hatley. Defence coach Paul Gustard adds the line-out and kick-off to his coaching remit and Glen Ella, who previously toured with England in Australia in 2016, will link-up with the squad in Argentina to assist Jones with the attack. The former Wallaby will be supported by skills coach Rory Teague.

“We have picked the best squad we have available and we are looking forward to going to Argentina and winning 2-0,” said England head coach Jones.

“The squad have a great opportunity to represent their country and win for England. There are a few new faces in the set-up so every training session and team meeting will count.

“The Pumas are a physically aggressive side and they have become very good at playing unstructured rugby; we need to make sure we control the structural part of the game and our defence will play an absolutely crucial role.

“Dylan Hartley will lead the side again having captained the team excellently during the RBS 6 Nations and will be supported by vice-captains Mike Brown, Danny Care and George Ford.”

England squad: 

Forwards: Will Collier (Harlequins, uncapped), Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter Chiefs, 4 caps), Ben Curry (Sale Sharks, uncapped), Tom Curry (Sale Sharks, uncapped), Charlie Ewels (Bath Rugby, 3 caps), Ellis Genge (Leicester Tigers, 1 cap), Dylan Hartley – captain (Northampton Saints, 84 caps), James Haskell (Wasps, 75 caps), Paul Hill (Northampton Saints, 5 caps), Nathan Hughes (Wasps, 8 caps), Nick Isiekwe (Saracens, uncapped), Joe Launchbury (Wasps, 42 caps), Matt Mullan (Wasps, 15 caps), Chris Robshaw (Harlequins, 55 caps), Sam Underhill (Ospreys/Bath Rugby, uncapped), Harry Williams (Exeter Chiefs, uncapped), Tom Wood (Northampton Saints, 50 caps)

Backs: Mike Brown – vice-captain (Harlequins, 60 caps), Danny Care – vice captain (Harlequins, 71 caps), Joe Cokanasiga (London Irish, uncapped), Nathan Earle (Saracens, uncapped), George Ford – vice captain (Bath Rugby, 35 caps), Piers Francis (Auckland Blues/Northampton Saints, uncapped), Sam James (Sale Sharks, uncapped), Alex Lozowski (Saracens, uncapped), Harry Mallinder (Northampton Saints, uncapped), Joe Marchant (Harlequins, uncapped), Jack Maunder (Exeter Chiefs, uncapped), Jonny May (Gloucester Rugby, 25 caps), Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs, 4 caps), Denny Solomona (Sale Sharks, uncapped)

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