England name unchanged starting side for Rugby World Cup final

England have named an unchanged starting line-up for Saturday’s Rugby World Cup final against South Africa.

The only change comes on the bench where Ben Spencer replaces the injured Willi Heinz. Scrum-half Spencer only arrived in Japan Monday but has now been fast-tracked into the matchday squad as England seek to win their second World Cup.

The XV sees George Ford start at fly-half with Owen Farrell at inside centre. Kyle Sinckler and Jonny May were both injury doubts in the lead up to the final, but both are fit to start.

“It has been a good week, the players have been together a while now so it’s less about the volume of training this week, it’s more about sharpening the sword,” England coach Eddie Jones said.

“South Africa are a difficult opponent and we are going to have to fight really hard to win. We know the physical part of the game is going to be important and the players will go into this game well prepared knowing how we want to play. We will go and play with no fear.

“South Africa will probably play a similar type of game they have played all tournament so we need be good in the arm wrestle and when we have the opportunities to break the game up, we are then confident and composed enough to take them.”

England: Elliot Daly, Anthony Watson, Manu Tuilagi, Owen Farrell (captain), 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

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