Thursday, 14th March 2019 @ 09:30
England Women head coach Simon Middleton has made five changes to his starting XV for the Women’s Six Nations clash against Scotland Women at Twickenham Stadium on Saturday 16 March, KO 7.30pm, live on Sky Sports Main Event, Sky Sports Action and Sky
Having beaten Ireland, France, Wales and Italy with try-scoring bonus points in the competition so far, England prepare to take on Scotland at The Home of England Rugby in the final round this weekend.
Vicky Fleetwood of Saracens Women will make her first start in this year’s Women’s Six Nations and is named as open-side flanker along with Saracens teammates Hannah Botterman and Poppy Cleall who return to the starting line-up as loosehead prop and second row respectively.
Wasps FC Ladies’ Amy Cokayne is named at hooker after missing out on selection against Italy through injury.
In the only change to the back line Gloucester-Hartpury scrum half Natasha Hunt will make her second start in this year’s championship.
On selection Middleton commented: “We’re excited for Vicky Fleetwood who has earned the opportunity to make her first start this weekend and it’s great to have Amy Cokayne back in the side after she missed out last weekend.
“Natasha Hunt and Leanne Riley both performed extremely well against Italy and this weekend will be great opportunity to provide Natasha with more XVs game-time. We’re very fortunate that we have two in-form players in that position and we’re comfortable starting and finishing either of them.
“Cath O’Donnell has been outstanding for us this tournament; the consistency of her performances has been exceptional. She’s played a lot of minutes over the last four rounds which is why we have named her on the bench for this fixture.”
Middleton added: “I’m really pleased with how we’ve progressed throughout this competition and the results so far have been a reflection of the hard work that’s gone on off the field.
“I want to see us perform at a higher level for an extended period against Scotland – if we deliver this then I’m sure we’ll get the result that we want.
“Scotland will be ultra-competitive this weekend. They’re a hard-working side and will be looking to finish their tournament on a high.”
The two sides last met in the 2018 Women’s Six Nations where England defeated Scotland 43-8.
Entry to Twickenham Stadium is free on conclusion of the men’s game on Saturday via Gate A or Gate F. Seating will be in the lower bowl and will be unallocated.
England Women match day 23 against Scotland:
15. Sarah McKenna (Saracens Women, 21 caps)
14. Jess Breach (Harlequins Ladies, 6 caps)
13. Emily Scarratt (Loughborough Lightning, 77 caps)
12. Zoe Harrison (Saracens Women, 12 caps)
11. Kelly Smith (Gloucester-Hartpury, 8 caps)
10. Katy Daley-Mclean (Loughborough Lightning, 106 caps)
9. Natasha Hunt (Gloucester-Hartpury, 45 caps)
1. Hannah Botterman (Saracens Women, 9 caps)
2. Amy Cokayne (Wasps FC Ladies, 44 caps)
3. Sarah Bern (Bristol Bears Women, 24 caps)
4. Poppy Cleall (Saracens Women, 28 caps)
5. Abbie Scott (Harlequins Ladies, 35 caps)
6. Sarah Beckett (Firwood Waterloo Ladies, 5 caps)
7. Vicky Fleetwood (Saracens Women, 68 caps)
8. Sarah Hunter © (Loughborough Lightning, 112 caps)
16. Lark Davies (Worcester Valkyries, 17 caps)
17. Vickii Cornborough (Harlequins Ladies, 45 caps)
18. Shaunagh Brown (Harlequins Ladies, 9 caps)
19. Catherine O’Donnell (Loughborough Lightning, 11 caps)
20. Marlie Packer (Saracens Women, 64 caps)
21. Leanne Riley (Harlequins Ladies, 27 caps)
22. Rachael Burford (Harlequins Ladies, 83 caps)
23. Emily Scott (Harlequins Ladies, 27 caps)
England Women 2019 Six Nations fixtures
Ireland 7-51 England
Friday 1 February, Energia Park Donnybrook, Dublin
England 41-26 France
Sunday 10 February, Castle Park, Doncaster
Wales 12-51 England
Sunday 24 February, Cardiff Arms Park, Cardiff
England 55-0 Italy
Saturday 9 March, Sandy Park, Exeter
England v Scotland
Saturday 16 March, KO 7.30pm (approx. – following the conclusion of the men’s game) - live Sky Sports