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Lancaster has faith in Marler

Stuart Lancaster believes Joe Marler is playing the best rugby of his career and so had no qualms in promoting the Harlequins prop into the England side to face Argentina at short notice.

Marler will start at loosehead in a late change of plans after Alex Corbisiero was called up by the British and Irish Lions and left the England camp in Salta on Thursday.

Lancaster said: "Joe was probably our man of the match in the CONSUR game (last Sunday) and watching him in training I always had in my mind to bring him on in the second-half because I trust Joe that much. He is playing the best rugby I have seen him play. In that regard it is not a problem."

Marler has taken the call-up in his stride and is excited by the challenge that awaits him against an Argentina side who pride themselves on their set-piece power and forward ferocity.

"I had an early heads up from Stuart when Alex got the call-up and I am excited," said Marler, who will win his 11th cap after making his England debut on last summer's tour of South Africa. "It has been an up and down season but I feel I am getting some form back.

"It is going to be tough. Traditionally they have a very good set piece, a very good scrum and lineout. We will have to front up. The environment will be something to relish and all the boys are looking forward to it."

Gloucester-bound flanker Matt Kvesic and Wasps wing Christian Wade will make their England debuts against the Pumas. With England anticipating a particularly physical contest at the breakdown, Kvesic's ability to win turnovers and disrupt the breakdown earned him the openside flanker role ahead of Tom Johnson.

"Matt Kvesic's inclusion was a difficult decision in that Tom Johnson has played well and has got experience. He has played well for me at openside and in South Africa," Lancaster said,.

"I think Matt has got potential for the future and I think he has shown in the Barbarians game in particular but also in his form for Worcester that he can be effective in an offensive breakdown - so retaining possession, generating quick ball - and in defensive breakdowns where he can turn over ball and slow ball up.

"The time is right to give him an opportunity, particularly when he is running alongside more experienced guys in Tom Wood and Ben Morgan."


From Belfast Telegraph