France v England: Confirmed line-ups and TV details

For only the second time, Shaun Wane takes charge of England today as they continue their World Cup preparations with a difficult trip to France.

The French come into the game on the back of a brilliant year for the country in rugby league. Toulouse went the Championship season unbeaten as they secured promotion to Super League joining French powerhouse Catalans who made history as they claimed the League Leaders’ Shield and played in a first ever Grand Final. Three of the 17 who featured for the Dragons at Old Trafford will play today as the French go in search of a historic win at the expense of the English.

As for England, it’s a huge game for Shaun Wane’s side with the World Cup start date less than a year away. The clock is ticking and it’s a chance for England’s stars to nail down a place in the World Cup squad whilst Wane tests out some combinations as he tries to develop a winning side.

The game kicks off at 14:30 today and will be live on BBC One. Before hand the women will take centre stage on BBC Two.

France

Turning our attention to the French, Laurent Frayssinous has indeed put his faith in Catalans players on the back of their superb campaign. Seven out of the nine Dragons named in the initial squad will feature including three of the 17 who played in this year’s Grand Final. The pack if heavily Catalans with Toulouse duo Romain Navarrete and Anthony Marion getting the nod at prop and hooker respectively. Unsurprisingly, Mark Kheirallah gets the fullback berth forcing fellow number ones Morgan Escare and Arthur Mourgue to move elsewhere in the team with the former starting on the wing whilst the latter takes up a place in the halves alongside Tony Gigot.

Confirmed Line-up:

1 Mark Kheirallah
2 Morgan Escare
3 Matthieu Laguerre
4 Mathieu Jussaume
5 Fouad Yaha
6 Arthur Mourgue
7 Tony Gigot
8 Romain Navarrete
9 Anthony Marion
10 Jordan Dezaria
11 Benjamin Jullien
12 Paul Seguier
13 Mickael Goudemand
Substitutes
14 Eloi Pelissier
15 Maxime Puech
16 Justin Sangare
17 Corentin Le Cam

England

As aforementioned, Shaun Wane has already named his 17 for today’s game. So, barring any late injuries, we already now which players will take to the field in France. Four of St Helens’ Super League Champions have been named alongside fellow Grand Finalist Tom Davies of Catalans. The absence of his teammate and England’s captain Sam Tomkins sees Niall Evalds come in at fullback whilst Wigan’s John Bateman replaces Tomkins as captain in the backrow alongside Liam Farrell and the brilliant Morgan Knowles. Alex Walmsley of course starts at prop alongside Mike Cooper whilst Leeds’ young prop Mikolaj Oledzki starts on the bench alongside teammate and Super League Dream Team hooker Kruise Leeming. There’s no place for Leeds teammate Harry Newman at centre with the selection of Zak Hardaker and Reece Lyne ahead of him. Perhaps the reasoning behind the move is the injury to Newman which was revealed on Thursday.

Confirmed Line-up:

1 Niall Evalds
2 Tom Davies
3 Zak Hardaker
4 Reece Lyne
5 Tommy Makinson
6 Jonny Lomax
7 Jordan Abdull
8 Alex Walmsley
9 Paul McShane
10 Mike Cooper
11 John Bateman
12 Liam Farrell
13 Morgan Knowles
Substitutes
14 Ben Currie
15 Kruise Leeming
16 Mikolaj Oledzki
17 Joe Philbin

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