Courtney Lawes was among three changes to the England rugby team starting lineup for this weekend’s Six Nations game against France.
Manu Tuilagi and Dylan Hartley are the other changes from the lineup that began the 12-6 win over Ireland in Dublin two weeks ago, which left England as the tournament’s only unbeaten team.
Lawes will replace James Haskell at blindside flanker, Tuilagi takes over for Billy Twelvetrees in the midfield and Hartley starts at hooker in place of Tom Young. Haskell, Twelvetrees and Young are all among the substitutes for the match in two days at Twickenham Stadium in London.
“We thought long and hard about changing a winning team which did so well against Ireland,” England coach Stuart Lancaster said in a statement. “But we believe that Dylan, Courtney and Manu are ready for the opportunity and allow us to vary our play, while the bench will add impact and energy as the game unfolds in the second half.”
England leads the Six Nations standings with four points after two games. Scotland, Wales, Ireland and Italy all have two points, with France, the bookmakers’ pre-tournament favorite for the title, winless.
ENGLAND TEAM 15 - Alex Goode (Saracens) 14 - Chris Ashton (Saracens) 13 - Manu Tuilagi (Leicester) 12 - Brad Barritt (Saracens) 11 - Mike Brown (Harlequins) 10 - Owen Farrell (Saracens) 9 - Ben Youngs (Leicester) 1 - Joe Marler (Harlequins) 2 - Dylan Hartley (Northampton) 3 - Dan Cole (Leicester) 4 - Joe Launchbury (Wasps) 5 - Geoff Parling (Leicester) 6 - Courtney Lawes (Northampton) 7 - Chris Robshaw (Harlequins, captain) 8 - Tom Wood (Northampton) SUBSTITUTES 16 - Tom Youngs (Leicester) 17 - David Wilson (Bath) 18 - Mako Vunipola (Saracens) 19 - James Haskell (Wasps) 20 - Thomas Waldrom (Leicester) 21 - Danny Care (Harlequins) 22 - Toby Flood (Leicester) 23 - Billy Twelvetrees (Gloucester)
To contact the reporter on this story: Bob Bensch in London at firstname.lastname@example.org.