Rugby Union

Owen Farrell dropped for Australia test

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Stuart Lancaster has decided to drop Owen Farrell for England’s last match of the Autumn with George Ford retaining his place at fly-half.

Ford played an integral role in England’s first win of the season last weekend against Samoa and Lancaster has kept faith in the 21-year-old.

Meanwhile Farrell, who has looked out of form against New Zealand and South Africa, will start on the bench against Australia at Twickenham on Saturday.


The Saracens back was experimented at inside-centre for the 28-9 victory over the Samoans and has been a stalwart in the side since 2012, but has been replaced by Billy Twelvetrees.

Twelvetrees will earn his 15th cap but Saturday will be his first start of the Autumn, Lancaster was keen to ensure Farrell remains in his thoughts.

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“He (Billy) took on board the feedback we gave him when he first came into camp and he has worked hard with us and at Gloucester and deserves his chance," Lancaster said.

“Owen is a key part of the squad and I’m sure he’ll make a positive contribution should he get the chance.”


Tom Wood and Dylan Hartley also return to the side, replacing James Haskell and Rob Webber at flanker and hooker respectively.

“Tom and Dylan were disappointed not to be in the XV last week and they are desperate to go out and perform on Saturday so that we finish the series on a high," the England coach added.

England have received good news in the form of Courtney Lawes. The second-row has been declared fit to play after picking up a knee injury last week.

The Aussies have recalled winger Rob Horne and flanker Sean McMahon to their side. They head into Saturday’s match on the back of two consecutive defeats to Ireland and France.

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