George Ford named on bench for England's Autumn Nations Cup game against Ireland

George Ford has recovered from an Achilles injury
George Ford has recovered from an Achilles injury

Leicester Tigers fly-half George Ford has made a recovery from an Achilles injury to be named on the bench for the second round of the Autumn Nations Cup game against Ireland.

Ford had already missed the final round of the Six Nations game against Italy and the opening game of the tournament against Georgia but now has recovered to provide cover to skipper Owen Farrell, who will continue to don the number 10 jersey.

Maro Itoje shifts from blindside to second row where he will partner with Joe Launchbury while Tom Curry and Sam Underhill return to back-row that also has Billy Vunipola. Jonathan Joseph has overcome a back spasm to take position at right wing with Jonny May at left.

The final two changes see Mako Vunipola and Kyle Sinckler return as props while Tom Dunn, Ellis Genge, Will Stuart, Jonny Hill, Ben Earl, Dan Robson and Max Malins join Ford on the bench.

“I’ve picked the strongest team possible for the most important game of our season," said Jones.

“We have the highest respect for the Ireland and their coach Andy Farrell. They’ve had good preparation with two wins and a dominant display against Wales, and we will need to be at our best on Saturday.

“We’ve trained well this week, we’re expecting a tough, physical game against Ireland and we’ve reflected that in our sessions. We’ll look to lift our performance even higher and are looking forward to a really good game of rugby.”

England starting XV: Elliot Daly; Jonathan Joseph, Ollie Lawrence, Henry Slade, Jonny May; Owen Farrell, Ben Youngs; Mako Vunipola, Jamie George, Kyle Sinckler; Maro Itoje, Joe Launchbury; Tom Curry, Sam Underhill, Billy Vunipola

Reserves: Tom Dunn, Ellis Genge, Will Stuart, Jonny Hill, Ben Earl, Dan Robson, George Ford, Max Malins.

England Fixtures