England to not release players for Barbarians' clash with New Zealand

RFU does not want any distractions for the England players during the autumn series
RFU does not want any distractions for the England players during the autumn series

Rugby Football Union (RFU) has ruled out the possibility of releasing England players for Barbarians during their unofficial Test against New Zealand on 4th November at Twickenham.

There were suggestions that the clash at Twickenham be considered as the fourth game of the recently concluded series between New Zealand and British and Irish Lions that ended in a 1-1 draw with former New Zealand coach Robbie Deans expressing his desire to discuss with various home unions on the release of players.

However, RFU confirmed that England players will be fully concentrating on their three-Test autumn schedule that includes clashes against Argentina, Australia and Samoa.

"England players will be focusing on preparing for our matches ahead of the Old Mutual Wealth Series and will not be released for the Barbarians fixture," a RFU spokesman said.

Earlier, Barbarians released a statement revealing their desire to assemble a formidable squad seeking the help of home unions.

"We are going to assemble an extremely strong team for this historic game at Twickenham," a Barbarians spokesman said.

"We hope it will include players involved in the exceptional Lions series with the All Blacks. The players will get the chance to face New Zealand for a fourth time this year.

"We have reached an agreement with Premiership Rugby, who have been very supportive about player release. We will talk with the home unions about access to players."

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