Saints trio selected by England for World Rugby U20 Championship

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Three Saints players have been named in England’s Under-20 Men squad to travel to South Africa for the 2024 World Rugby U20 Championship.

Head coach Mark Mapletoft and assistant coach Andy Titterrell have named their 30-strong group for this year’s tournament, with their first match in Pool C against Argentina taking place on Saturday, June 29 at Athlone Stadium (1pm BST kick-off).

The Saints trio of flanker Henry Pollock, hooker Craig Wright and winger Toby Cousins are all included.

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Twenty-two current squad members attained caps in the victorious Six Nations Championship recently with 18 of the squad having made senior competitive appearances for their parent clubs in the 2023/24 season.

Henry Pollock (photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)Henry Pollock (photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)
Henry Pollock (photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)

The team boasts 145 cumulative U20 caps, with 27 players progressing through the England Rugby Men’s Pathway with either U17, U18 or U19 caps.

Saints’ contingent in the young England squad could likely have been higher, however half-backs George Makepeace-Cubitt and Archie McParland both suffered injuries in the recent uncapped clashes with Georgia.

Arthur Green (Bath Rugby), Cameron Miell and Ollie Allan (both Leicester Tigers), Saracens’ Jack Bracken and Angus Hall, Benjamin Coen (Exeter Chiefs) and Lucas Friday of Harlequins are the seven uncapped players will make their U20 bows in South Africa.

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England continue their U20 Championship with pool stage outings against Fiji (July 4, 3.30pm BST kick-off) and hosts South Africa (July 9, 6pm BST kick-off) at Athlone Stadium before the tournament knockout fixtures.

Supporters can view England’s pursuit of a fourth U20 Championship this summer with each fixture available to watch live on RugbyPass TV.

Mapletoft said: “Over the last month, we’ve had a block of preparation that has helped our development and planning for the upcoming Championship.

“Recent fixtures against Coventry and Georgia have also afforded us the opportunity to integrate new faces into the fold, seven of which are set for their first competitive caps this summer. I’d like to congratulate Arthur, Cam, Ollie, Jack, Ben, Lucas and Angus and thank them and the squad as whole for their impressive work put in recently.

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“Our pool stage fixtures are an exciting bill of opponents with varying styles and approaches to the game that will test our capabilities in a short turnaround between matchdays.

"The players, staff and I are excited to make the country proud.”

England U20 Men’s 2024 World Rugby U20 Championship squad

Forwards: Joe Bailey (Exeter Chiefs, Newton Abbot RFC, 5 caps), Finn Carnduff (Leicester Tigers, Market Harborough RFC, 15 caps), Harvey Cuckson (Bath Rugby, Mold RFC, 2 caps), Afolabi Fasogbon (Gloucester Rugby, Bishop Wand School, 11 caps), Arthur Green (Bath Rugby, Frome RFC, uncapped), James Halliwell (Bristol Bears, Thornbury RFC, 10 caps), James Isaacs (Saracens, Hemel Hempstead Camelot RFC, 3 caps), Kane James (Exeter Chiefs, St Peters RFC, 4 caps), Junior Kpoku (Racing 92, Saracens Amateurs, 4 caps), Nathan Michelow (Saracens, Brentwood Rugby, 10 caps), Cameron Miell (Leicester Tigers, Paul Roos, uncapped), Jacob Oliver (Newcastle Falcons, Barnard Castle Rugby Club, 5 caps), Asher Opoku-Fordjour (Sale Sharks, Broadstreet RFC, 14 caps), Henry Pollock (Saints, Buckingham Rugby Club, 5 caps), Billy Sela (Bath Rugby, Royal Wootton Bassett RFC, 6 caps), Olamide Sodeke (Saracens, Blackheath Rugby Club, 4 caps), Craig Wright (Saints, Braintree Rugby Club, 5 caps).

Backs: Ollie Allan (Leicester Tigers, Hungerford RFC, uncapped), Josh Bellamy (Harlequins, Rosslyn Park, 4 caps), Jack Bracken (Saracens, Barnet Elizabethans RFC, uncapped), Benjamin Coen (Exeter Chiefs, Teignmouth RFC, uncapped), Toby Cousins (Saints, Bugbrooke RFC, 6 caps), Lucas Friday (Harlequins, Bromley RFC, uncapped), Angus Hall (Saracens, Sevenoaks Rugby Club, uncapped), Ioan Jones (Gloucester Rugby, Minchinhampton RFC, 4 caps), Sean Kerr (Harlequins, Sutton and Epsom Rugby Club, 4 caps), Ben Redshaw (Newcastle Falcons, West Park Leeds RFC, 5 caps)Oli Spencer (Newcastle Falcons, Epping Rams Rugby, 5 caps), Ben Waghorn (Harlequins, Chipstead Rugby Club, 7 caps), Alex Wills (Sale Sharks, Droitwich Rugby Club, 7 caps)

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England U20 Men’s 2024 World Rugby U20 Championship fixtures

Matchday 1 (June 29) - England vs. Argentina – Athlone Stadium - (13:00 BST kick-off)

Matchday 2 (July 4) - England vs. Fiji – Athlone Stadium - (15:30 BST kick-off)

Matchday 3 (July 9) - South Africa vs. England – Athlone Stadium - (18:00 BST kick-off)

Knockout matches

Matchday 4 (Sunday, July 14)

Matchday 5 (final and ranking matches, Friday, July 19)

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