England v Tonga, Autumn Internationals 2021: What time is kick-off, what TV channel is it on and what is our prediction?

·3-min read
Manu Tuilagi of England is tackled by Cooper Vuna of Tonga - GETTY IMAGES
Manu Tuilagi of England is tackled by Cooper Vuna of Tonga - GETTY IMAGES

England open their Autumn Internationals 2021 campaign, also known as the Autumn Nations Series, against Tonga at Twickenham.

It will be the first chance for Eddie Jones to try out the new faces in his squad before taking on the might of Australia and South Africa later in November.

When is it?

Saturday, November 6.

What time is kick-off?

3.15pm GMT.

What TV channel is it on?

Amazon Prime Video will be streaming all England's games.

What is the latest team news?

Eddie Jones suffered a double blow when he lost Anthony Watson and Luke Cowan-Dickie to injury for England's Autumn International campaign.

However, Maro Itoje's participation in the three matches against Tonga, Australia and South Africa is not in doubt.

Itoje injured a shoulder in Saracens' 71-17 victory against Bath but it is not thought to threaten his involvement. The prognosis was far bleaker for Bath wing Watson, though, who ruptured an anterior cruciate ligament in a potential season-ending injury in the same game. He has been replaced in Jones' 34-man squad by Harlequins centre Joe Marchant.

Watson's participation in the Six Nations is also doubtful with ACL lay-offs typically ranging from seven to nine months, although he will be visiting a specialist knee consultant.

Exeter hooker Cowan-Dickie is likely to be out for at least two months after suffering what the Chiefs described as a "significant ankle injury" in their victory away to Wasps. That meant a reprieve for Saracens' Jamie George, who was one of four 50-cappers Jones, the head coach, dropped from his squad along with George Ford and Billy and Mako Vunipola.

What are Telegraph writers saying?

After much speculation, Eddie Jones has picked a squad for England's autumn internationals that reflects what most fans and pundits wanted to see, writes our columnist Brian Moore.

There is a plethora of young players and bags of talent, but how will Jones use them, and will he let them play without undue restrictions?

England's recent travails have come about because they have not been able to create momentum and enough phases to allow them to dictate the tempo of games. Too often they have been playing off the back foot and, when faced with static ball, they have been forced to kick, and they have not done that well.

When England are at their best, they get the breakdown right, and it will be no different in this series. Though this sounds obtuse, the quality of second-phase ball depends on getting the set-piece scrum and line-out absolutely right.

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What are the odds?

TBC

What is our prediction?

England should comfortably see off Tonga. It will be a physical battle, and probably close at the start, but as the visitors tire England's superior fitness should tell. Eddie Jones is likely to experiment with combinations ahead of tougher fixtures against Australia and South Africa.
Predicted score: England 53 Tonga 12

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