England U20 confirm side for semi-final against South Africa

Ben Curry will be hoping to lead England to the final
Ben Curry will be hoping to lead England to the final
©World Rugby

England U20 head coach Steve Bates has named the squad for the World Rugby U20 Championship semi-final clash against South Africa to be played in Narbonne on Tuesday.

Tom Hardwick moves from the bench and replaces Will Butler at number 12 while Jordan Olowofela also gains a promotion and takes the place of Ben Loader. Rory Brand and Ben White exchange their place with the latter moving among the replacements while Marcus Smith retains his place at number 10.

Steve Bates said: “We’re into the knockout stages of the competition now so we need to raise the tempo of our game and be more accurate as well as play at a more intense pace.

“At this stage of the competition the stakes are high and we need to be able to play under that type of pressure while also being able to raise our game.

“We’ve been able to rotate the squad quite nicely throughout the tournament, we’ve got two Premiership players coming back into the side who didn’t play in our final pool game so they will be fresh and will add a great deal to the team.

“My message to the players on Tuesday will be a simple one, these opportunities don’t come around too often, we are in the semi-final of a wonderful competition, playing southern hemisphere opposition and I want them to show their class. The key thing is not to be overawed by the occasion, but to go out there and attack them.”

England U20s
15. Tom Parton (London Irish)
14. Gabriel Ibitoye (Harlequins)
13. Fraser Dingwall (Northampton Saints)
12. Tom Hardwick (Leicester Tigers)
11. Jordan Olowofela (Leicester Tigers)
10. Marcus Smith (Harlequins)
9. Ben White (Leicester Tigers)
1. Alex Seville (Gloucester Rugby)
2. Henry Walker (Gloucester Rugby)
3. Joe Heyes (Leicester Tigers)
4. Joel Kpoku (Saracens)
5. James Scott (Worcester Warriors)
6. Ted Hill (Worcester Warriors)
7. Ben Curry (Sale Sharks)
8. Josh Basham (London Irish)

16. Gabriel Oghre (Wasps)
17. Ciaran Knight (Gloucester Rugby)
18. Ehren Painter (Northampton Saints)
19. Tom Willis (Wasps Rugby)
20. Aaron Hinkley (Gloucester Rugby)
21. Rory Brand (London Irish)
22. James Grayson (Northampton Saints)
23. Will Butler (Worcester Warriors)