England team to face Wallabies at Twickenham

England have named Manu Tuilagi and Dylan Hartley on the bench for Saturday's clash with Australia at Twickenham.

Tuilagi is set to make his first appearance of the autumn series when it reaches its climax against the Wallabies, having missed the opening three games because of a groin strain.

In a surprise selection, the Leicester centre is joined among the replacements by England co-captain Hartley, who loses out to Jamie George in the race to start as hooker.

Whenever England have played top opposition, Hartley has been first choice in the position since Eddie Jones took over at the end of 2015, but is now confined to a bench role.

The 32-year-old started the Tests against South Africa and New Zealand earlier this month, but was demoted for Japan's visit to Twickenham and was expected to be restored to the starting XV for the climax to the Quilter Internationals.

Jack Nowell was due to be named on the right wing only to be ruled out by what is thought to be a hamstring injury, giving Joe Cokanasiga the chance to win his second cap.

Ben Te'o returns at inside centre as one of nine changes made to the side that laboured to a 35-15 victory over Japan.

The first choice half-back pairing of Owen Farrell and Ben Youngs are reunited, while Jonny May is back on the left wing as England target a sixth successive victory over Australia.

Courtney Lawes and Maro Itoje form the second row partnership, Brad Shields features at blindside flanker and Sam Underhill will look to pick up where he left off against New Zealand in the number seven jersey.

Jones said Tuilagi had proved his fitness and is eager to get some game time in the final Test of the autumn series.

"He trained yesterday and came through it really well. It is a good opportunity for him and the team. Manu can't wait to get out there."

Asked why he had opted to start with George at hooker ahead of co-captain Hartley, Jones told Sky Sports: "We think that is the best order.

"We think Australia will come out like they normally come out. Like a bull at a china gate. And Jamie is a very good defender. So he suits us in that part of the game.

"I think the last part of the game will be a bit of an arm wrestle. That's when Dylan is at his best."

Nowell's injury opens the door for Cokanasiga and Jones expects him to make the most of his chance.

"It's a great opportunity for him. We've been really impressed with what he's done. He keeps delighting us with the way he's improving."

Wigglesworth is Jones' choice on the bench in the finisher role ahead of Care and the England coach believes the Saracens scrum-half is the right choice against the Wallabies.

"Danny can feel disappointed but we just feel the end of game will be tight and Richard, with his good control around the ruck, will be the best person for it."

Itoje's autumn series form has clearly impressed Jones, while the return to fitness of Lawes is a bonus.

"Maro is going to be the best lock in the world," predicted Jones.

"He is really growing in stature. Meanwhile, Courtney is getting back to his best."

England team to play Australia

Forwards: 1 Ben Moon (Exeter Chiefs), 2 Jamie George (Saracens), 3 Kyle Sinckler (Harlequins), 4 Maro Itoje (Saracens), 5 Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints), 6 Brad Shields (Wasps) , 7 Sam Underhill (Bath Rugby), 8 Mark Wilson (Newcastle Falcons)

Backs: 9 Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers), 10 Owen Farrell (Co-captain, Saracens), 11 Jonny May (Leicester Tigers), 12 Ben Te’o (Worcester Warriors), 13 Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs), 14 Joe Cokanasiga (Bath Rugby), 15 Elliot Daly (Wasps)

Replacements: 16 Dylan Hartley (Co-captain, Northampton Saints), 17 Alec Hepburn (Exeter Chiefs), 18 Harry Williams (Exeter Chiefs), 19 Charlie Ewels (Bath Rugby), 20 Nathan Hughes (Wasps), 21 Richard Wigglesworth (Saracens), 22 George Ford (Leicester Tigers), 23 Manu Tuilagi (Leicester Tigers)

More England Autumn Internationals Rugby News >