THREE SHARKS NAMED IN ENGLAND A SQUAD

The England Men’s A side returns for an encounter with Portugal at Leicester Tigers Stadium on Sunday 25 February, kicking-off at 13:00 GMT with tickets priced from £17.50 for adults. This is the first time that England Men’s A has played since a fixture against South Africa A in 2016. Attending fans will have the opportunity to watch the future stars of the England Men’s senior team in action.  

Portugal will take on England off the back of a strong showing in last year’s Rugby World Cup, which included a draw against Georgia followed by a maiden tournament win over quarter-finalists Fiji.  

An exciting provisional 27-man squad has been announced that includes a blend of experience and youth, with five players already capped at senior international level and some younger stars just at the start of their England careers. Jamie Blamire, Nick Isiekwe, Tom Pearson, Harry Randall and Ollie Hassell-Collins make up the quintet who have already represented the senior side.  

21 of the 27 involved players have been brought through the England Rugby pathway and achieved caps at either U18 or U20 level within the men’s system. 

The squad will assemble at Loughborough University next Tuesday (20 February) to begin preparations for the fixture later that week, where they will in addition be joined by some players presently training with the senior squad. 

The squad was selected by England senior men’s head coach Steve Borthwick in consultation with England Men’s A head coach George Skivington, defence coach Dom Waldouck, attack coach Sam Vesty and RFU Executive Director of Performance Rugby Conor O’Shea. 

England head coach, Steve Borthwick, said:  

“We’re delighted to see the return of A Team rugby as such an important part of our rugby’s development and to announce the squad for the forthcoming fixture against Portugal.  

“We have got a lot of talented and exciting young players in England, and this is a great opportunity for them to show they can play international rugby. We have selected players in this initial squad who we believe have the potential to be in the England team in the very near future.

“One of the very important aspects of this A Team is to provide a platform for players who have come out of the U20s and who are playing club rugby, allowing them to experience the international environment. 

“It’s great to have the fixture at the Leicester Tigers’ stadium. It’s an area where the supporters know and love their rugby. I have no doubt the players will revel in the support they will get from the stands.” 

Tickets to England A’s match-up with Portugal this February are available to purchase here.  

England Men’s A squad for Portugal: 

Forwards 

Fin Baxter (Harlequins) 

Jamie Blamire (Newcastle Falcons, 7 caps) 

Tarek Haffar (Northampton Saints) 

Sam Riley (Harlequins) 

Seb Blake (Gloucester) 

Josh Iosefa Scott (Exeter Chiefs) 

James Harper (Sale Sharks) 

Nick Isiekwe (Saracens, 11 caps) 

Arthur Clark (Gloucester) 

Ben Bamber (Sale Sharks) 

Rusiate Tuima (Exeter Chiefs) 

Tom Pearson (Northampton Saints, 1 cap) 

Guy Pepper (Newcastle Falcons) 

Alfie Barbeary (Bath) 

Greg Fisilau (Exeter Chiefs) 

Jack Clement (Gloucester) 

Backs 

Caolan Englefield (Gloucester) 

Harry Randall (Bristol Bears, 2 caps) 

Charlie Atkinson (Gloucester) 

Jamie Shillcock (Leicester Tigers) 

Oliver Sleightholme (Northampton Saints) 

Oliver Hartley (Saracens) 

Rekeiti Ma’asi-White (Sale Sharks) 

Cadan Murley (Harlequins) 

Ollie Hassell-Collins (Leicester Tigers, 2 caps) 

Josh Hodge (Exeter Chiefs) 

Sam Harris (Bath) 

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