Eddie Jones selects unchanged England side for World Cup final

Luke BradshawSports Writer
Eddie Jones, (L) and Owen Farrell (Credit: Getty Images)
Eddie Jones, (L) and Owen Farrell (Credit: Getty Images)

England are unchanged from the team that beat New Zealand for their World Cup final against South Africa.

Eddie Jones has named exactly the same match day squad for the game, barring Ben Spencer’s inclusion on the bench for the injured Willi Heinz.

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George Ford will stay at fly-half, with captain Owen Farrell playing at inside centre. Farrell, along with Kyle Sinkler and Jonny May have all been declared fit following injury doubts earlier in the week.

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Jones said: "We know South Africa are going to come at us, and we're going to come at them even harder. I've got no doubt that they'll play better, but we'll play better - we will play with no fear.

"We're confident in the game we have and we're confident in the way we've prepared. We're ready to go. Hang on to your seats, because it's the last dip of the rollercoaster."

Saracens scrum-half Spencer only arrived in Japan this week, after missing out on initial World Cup squad selection, but the injury to Heinz has led to his last-minute call-up.

Ben Spencer (L) and Eddie Jones (Credit: Getty Images)
Ben Spencer (L) and Eddie Jones (Credit: Getty Images)

On his inclusion, Spencer said: "I was just at home, feeding the kids, then got the phone call on Saturday afternoon, was on a flight Sunday morning, and arrived Monday morning.

"The kids are a bit too young to understand, but my partner was thrilled. They actually got here [to Japan] this morning. It's an exciting week for all of us."

Head coach Jones has urged his players to improve from their impressive 19-7 win over the All Blacks, with the Springboks offering a very different game to the one posed by Steve Hansen’s side.

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He said: “South Africa are a different proposition - they're much more physical, they come through you at the front door, whereas New Zealand it's the front door and back door.

"We have to make adjustments, but we're ready for the brutality of the game. Our players have had the will to prepare. They've pushed themselves through some tough physical tasks. They've worked hard to get the right tactical game and they've worked hard to build the bonds between them."

England team to play South Africa: Elliot Daly; Anthony Watson, Manu Tuilagi, Owen Farrell, Jonny May, George Ford, Ben Youngs; Mako Vunipola, Jamie George, Kyle Sinckler, Maro Itoje, Courtney Lawes, Tom Curry, Sam Underhill, Billy Vunipola

Replacements: Luke Cowan-Dickie, Joe Marler, Dan Cole, George Kruis, Mark Wilson, Ben Spencer, Henry Slade, Jonathan Joseph

Rugby World Cup final: England vs South Africa

Yokohama International Stadium, Saturday, 2 November, 09:00 GMT

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