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Teimana Harrison handed his England debut against Wales

Published 27/05/2016

Teimana Harrison (green shirt) will make his England debut against Wales on Sunday
Teimana Harrison (green shirt) will make his England debut against Wales on Sunday

England will give Teimana Harrison his debut in Sunday's Test against Wales at Twickenham after selecting the New Zealand-born back row in place of Chris Robshaw.

Harrison is picked at blindside flanker in a straight swap for Robshaw, who is also omitted from the bench after being rested by head coach Eddie Jones ahead of next month's tour to Australia.

The 23-year-old Harrison has enjoyed a stellar season at Northampton, where his determination, athleticism and skill at the breakdown have propelled him into the England team.

"Teimana gets a start at six, which is a great chance for him to make a statement ahead of the tour to Australia," Jones said.

Jack Clifford wins his first start in six caps at number eight with James Haskell's presence at openside completing the back row.

England are unable to pick players from Aviva Premiership finalists Saracens and Exeter, who clash at the same venue 24 hours earlier.

Three more players are in line to make their debuts off the bench in hooker Tommy Taylor, prop Ellis Genge and centre Ollie Devoto, with flanker Matt Kvesic also among the replacements.

Luther Burrell has been selected at inside centre knowing a strong performance will see him promoted into the senior squad for Australia in the absence of Manu Tuilagi, who has been ruled out with a hamstring problem.

Marland Yarde is given the chance to show why he has been preferred to prolific Saracen Chris Ashton for the series against the Wallabies after being given the nod on the left wing.

At scrum-half Ben Youngs is chosen ahead of Danny Care to partner George Ford at half-back.

"We've picked a side we believe can beat Wales. It's a good mixture of experienced players and youth," Jones said.

"Obviously we have a number of players missing from the squad who are taking part in the Premiership final, but this provides us with a great opportunity to expose other players to Test rugby.

"This will serve to strengthen the squad's depth as we move towards the 2019 World Cup.

"We've prepared well this week and I'm pleased with the progress the squad have made in the time we've had together.

"There's been plenty of energy and enthusiasm and you can tell the lads have enjoyed being back in camp.

"As always there were some tight calls on selection and that's how we want it. There are some new faces to the squad.

"Ellis Genge and Tommy Taylor have all trained well this week and deserve their spots in the 23.

"This is an important Test match and a great opportunity for us to play some positive, physical rugby.

"We are a young team learning our craft, Wales are an experienced team; it'll be a great test for us. England versus Wales is a special occasion."

Burrell will be making his first England appearance since being a controversial omission from the squad for last autumn's World Cup

"Luther has done well. He lost a fair bit of weight and is looking much better now," Jones said at Friday's team announcement press conference.

"Inside centre is a position where we've lost one player and so he has the opportunity to show what he's got and possibly put one foot on the plane to Australia.

"He's a nice lad and didn't deserve to be in the Six Nations squad. He took his medicine. He's gone back to his club and has played well since."

It was Harrison's form in the second half of the season which caught Jones' eye.

"Teimana is very raw and doesn't have a great rugby background. He came over here as a young kid and decided England is his home," Jones said.

"His form post Christmas has been absolutely outstanding - his ball-carrying and defence."

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