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England trims squad for Six Nations opener, retains Wilkinson

England trims squad for Six Nations opener, retains Wilkinson

England named a 29-man squad Thursday ahead of its Six Nations opener against Scotland, cutting four players and retaining oft-injured flyhalf Jonny Wilkinson.
Wingers Paul Sackey and Mark Cueto were left out because they are injured and not expected to be ready in time for the Feb. 3 match at Twickenham.
Scrumhalf Shaun Perry and lock Alex Brown were also dropped by coach Brian Ashton, who is set to take charge of his first match since becoming coach last month, and the pair will join up with the second-tier England Saxons squad for a Feb. 2 match against Italy A.
"Shaun and Alex have just missed the cut," Ashton said. "It was a very tough decision and underlines the strong competition for places."
Wilkinson has recovered from a spate of injuries and may return for the first time since kicking the winning drop goal in the 2003 World Cup final.
England, which has slumped dramatically since winning the World Cup and lost eight of its past nine matches, will name its final 22-man squad Monday.
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England squad:
Backs: Iain Balshaw, Mike Catt, Harry Ellis, Andy Farrell, Toby Flood, Shane Geraghty, Josh Lewsey, Jamie Noon, Peter Richards, Jason Robinson, Mathew Tait, Mike Tindall, Jonny Wilkinson.
Forwards: George Chuter, Martin Corry, Louis Deacon, Perry Freshwater, Danny Grewcock, Magnus Lund, Lee Mears, Lewis Moody, Tom Palmer, Tim Payne, Tom Rees, Steve Thompson, Phil Vickery, Dan Ward-Smith, Julian White, Joe Worsley.


Updated : 2021-05-16 15:22 GMT+08:00