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How every team will line up in Autumn Nations Cup this weekend

T

he inaugural Autumn Nations Cup is in full swing as the competition heads into its second weekend of fixtures. 

England and Ireland both got their campaigns off to winning starts, against Georgia and Wales – who meet this weekend – respectively, and they are set to clash at Twickenham on Saturday afternoon. 

But tournament organisers hope Vern Cotter’s side – now guaranteed bottom spot in Pool B – will still be able to play on the final weekend.

Here’s how every team will line up this weekend…

England v Ireland – Twickenham, Saturday 3pm GMT

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George Ford has returned to the England squad for their meeting with Ireland at Twickenham

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It’s all change among the props and on the flanks, though. Mako Vunipola and Kyle Sinckler replace Ellis Genge and Will Stuart, who did very well against Georgia, in the front row. In the back row, Tom Curry and Sam Underhill return as an “aggressive, low to the ground back row” against “the No1 poaching team in Europe”. There is no place for Jack Willis.

Besides Ford, the bench has an inexperienced feel, with six players yet to reach six caps.

England: 15 Daly; 14 Joseph, 13 Lawrence, 12 Slade, 11 May; 10 Farrell (c), 9 Youngs; 1 M.Vunipola, 2 George, 3 Sinckler; 4 Itoje, 5 Launchbury; 6 Curry, 7 Underhill, 8 B.Vunipola.

Reps: 16 Dunn, 17 Genge, 18 Stuart, 19 Hill, 20 Earl; 21 Robson, 22 Ford, 23 Malins.

Ireland also make four changes, two of them enforced. Johnny Sexton is injured, so James Ryan captains for the first time and Ross Byrne starts at 10. Alongside him, Jamison Gibson-Park retains his place at scrum-half ahead of Conor Murray.

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Ross Byrne will deputise for injured Leinster team-mate Johnny Sexton

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Robbie Henshaw is also out and replaced by Bundee Aki, while Keith Earls comes in for Andrew Conway on the wing. CJ Stander returns in the back row and Jacob Stockdale and Iain Henderson are back on the bench. Billy Burns, the former England U20 fly-half, is also among the replacements.

Ireland: 15 Keenan; 14 Earls, 13 Farrell, 12 Aki, 11 Lowe; 10 R Byrne, 9 Gibson-Park; 1 Healy, 2 Kelleher, 3 Porter; 4 Roux, 5 Ryan (c); 6 Stander, 7 O’Mahony, 8 Doris.

Reps: 16 Herring, 17 E Byrne, 18 Bealham, 19 Henderson, 20 Connors, 21 Murray, 22 B Burns, 23 Stockdale.

Wales v Georgia – Parc y Scarlets, Saturday 5.15pm

Wales have lost six matches in a row, but they are much changed for the simplest task of the autumn. Alun Wyn Jones gets a rare rest, so Justin Tipuric captains the side from openside flanker.

Wayne Pivac has handed three debuts: James Botham (grandson of Sir Ian, son of Liam) starts on the flank, Kieran Hardy at scrum-half and Johnny Williams at centre. In addition, Callum Sheedy (fly-half) and Louis Rees-Zammit (wing) start for the first time. There is another uncapped player, Ioan Lloyd, on the bench.

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Justin Tipuric will captain Wales with Alun Wyn Jones handed a rare rest

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There are 13 changes in total from the defeat to Ireland, with Liam Williams (who moves from wing to full-back) and Tipuric the only survivors. Notable new starters include Johnny McNicholl and Nick Tompkins in the backs.

Wales: 15 L.Williams; 14 McNicholl, 13 Tompkins, 12 Williams, 11 Rees-Zammit; 10 Sheedy, 9 Hardy; 1 W.Jones, 2 Dee, 3 Lee; 4 Ball, 5 S.Davies; 6 Botham, 7 Tipuric (c), 8 Wainwright.

Reps: 16 Parry, 17 Smith, 18 Brown, 19 Hill, 20 James Davies, 21 Webb, 22 Lloyd, 23 Holmes.

Georgia have made five changes to the team that lost to England. Scrum-half Vasil Lobzhanidze comes into the starting lineup in place of Gela Aprasidze, while Sandro Todua comes in on the wing. 

Jaba Bregvadze is back at hooker and the experienced lock Kote Mikautadze returns too. In the back row, Otar Giorgadze comes in. 

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Georgia have made five changes after their 40-0 defeat by England last weekend

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Georgia: 15 Khmaladze; 14 Tabutsadze, 13 Kveseladze, 12 Sharikadze (c), 11 Todua; 10 Abzhandadze, 9 Lobzhanidze; 1 Nariashvili, 2 Bregvadze, 3 Gigashvili; 4 Kerdikoshvili, 5 Mikautadze; 6 Giorgadze, 7 Saghinadze, 8 Gorgadze

Reps: 16 Chkoidze, 17 Gogichashvili, 18 Kaulashvili, 19 Jaiani, 20 Tkhilaishvili, 21 Aprasidze, 22 Tapladze, 23 Mchedlidze.

Scotland vs France – Murrayfield, Sunday 3.15pm

Scotland have made five changes after their victory over Italy. On the wing, Blair Kinghorn comes in for Darcy Graham, with Sean Maitland coming onto the bench. 

There are four changes up front, including an all-new front row. Rory Sutherland drops out with an ankle injury and is replaced by Oli Kebble, while Fraser Brown returns from concussion at hooker. 

George Turner retains his place as the replacement hooker ahead of Stuart McInally. On the tighthead side, Simon Berghan comes in for Zander Fagerson, who drops to the bench. 

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Blair Kinghorn starts for Scotland against France at Murrayfield

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Fit-again No8 Matt Fagerson is back in place of Blade Thomson, who drops to the bench.

Scotland: Hogg (c); Kinghorn, Harris, Johnson, Van der Merwe, Weir, Price; Kebble, Brown, Berghan; Cummings, Gray; Ritchie, Watson, M Fagerson.

Reps: Turner, Bhatti, Z Fagerson, Skinner, Thomson, Hidalgo-Clyne, Taylor, Maitland.

France will make a lot of changes to their side to face Italy next weekend due to the agreements with the clubs. For now, they have much of their best squad available – but have still made eight changes from their last game, the win over Ireland in the Six Nations. 

The most notable of those is that Romain Ntamack is injured and replaced by Mathieu Jalibert at fly-half. Louis Carbonnel is primed for a debut from the bench as Jalibert’s cover. There are two other changes in the backs, with Teddy Thomas returning on the wing (so Gael Fickou moves to centre), while Thomas Ramos comes in for Anthony Bouthier at full-back. 

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There will be no Romain Ntamack for Les Bleus

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There are five changes up front, with three of them in the front row. First choice Cyril Baille, Julien Marchand and Mohamed Haouas drop to the bench, and are replaced by Jean-Baptiste Gros, Camille Chat and Demba Bamba. In the second row, Romain Taofifénua comes in, while Dylan Cretin starts in the back row. Gros and Cretin make their first starts.

France: 15 Ramos; 14 Thomas, 13 Vakatawa, 12 Fickou, 11 Rattez; 10 Jalibert, 9 Dupont; 1 Gros, 2 Chat, 3 Bamba; 4 Le Roux, 5 Taofifénua; 6 Cretin, 7 Ollivon ©, 8 Alldritt.

Reps: 16 Marchand, 17 Baille, 18 Haouas, 19 Willemse, 20 Woki; 21 Couilloud, 22 Carbonnel, 23 Vincent.

The Autumn Nations Cup will be available to stream on Amazon Prime Video from November 13.

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