16 June 2018
Tom Parton and Josh Basham are named in the starting line-up, while Rory Brand is amongst the replacements as England U20s take on France in tomorrow’s World Rugby U20 Championship final in Beziers (kick-off 6pm BST, live on ITV 4).
Parton, who was a try-scorer during England’s impressive 32-31 semi-final victory over South Africa will be appearing in his second successive junior World Cup final.
Sale Sharks’ Ben Curry will captain the side at the Stade De La Mediterranee, with England reaching their sixth-consecutive World Rugby U20 Championship final.
England make one change to the side that defeated South Africa 32-31 in the semi-final, tighthead prop Ehren Painter replacing Joe Heyes in the front-row.
On the bench, forward Tom Willis will be looking to follow in his brother’s footsteps, with Jack Willis winning the tournament in 2016. England also won the tournament in 2013 and 2014.
Bates’ side, who have scored 22 tries in the tournament, finished the pool stages in France as top seeds courtesy of three bonus-point victories over Argentina, Italy and Scotland before defeating the Junior Springboks in the last four.
Steve Bates said: “We have a side packed full of experience and talent and I’m really excited to see them play on Sunday in the final of this great tournament.
“We know we are going to have to play well to beat France. In these one off games it’s about starting well, full of intent as well as keeping your composure and finishing strongly.
“We’ve played France in the same stadium during the Six Nations and it was a great atmosphere and the players are relishing the opportunity to play there again cheered on by a proud and vocal group of England supporters.
“It is going to be a fantastic occasion, and a moment that these players will treasure and remember for the rest of their careers. I want them to go out and perform as well as we have done throughout the tournament, be patient with the ball and play high-intensity, high-tempo rugby.”
15. Tom Parton (London Irish)
14. Gabriel Ibitoye (Harlequins)
13. Fraser Dingwall (Northampton Saints)
12. Tom Hardwick (Leicester Tigers)
11. Jordan Olowofela (Leicester Tigers)
10. Marcus Smith (Harlequins)
9. Ben White (Leicester Tigers)
1. Alex Seville (Gloucester Rugby)
2. Henry Walker (Gloucester Rugby)
3. Ehren Painter (Northampton Saints)
4. Joel Kpoku (Saracens)
5. James Scott (Worcester Warriors)
6. Ted Hill (Worcester Warriors)
7. Ben Curry – captain (Sale Sharks)
8. Josh Basham (London Irish)
16. Beck Cutting (Worcester Warriors)
17. Ciaran Knight (Gloucester Rugby)
18. Joe Heyes (Leicester Tigers)
19. Tom Willis (Wasps)
20. Aaron Hinkley (Gloucester Rugby)
21. Rory Brand (London Irish)
22. James Grayson (Northampton Saints)
23. Will Butler (Worcester Warriors)
England U20 fixtures and results:
Pool B: England 39-18 Argentina
Pool B: England 43-5 Italy
Pool B: England 35-10 Scotland
Semi-final: England 32-31 South Africa
Finals day - Beziers, 17 June