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Lancaster not looking at major changes

After a year of revolution, Stuart Lancaster now believes he has formed the bulk of the squad that will take England through to the 2015 Rugby World Cup.

Lancaster axed 15 members of Martin Johnson's World Cup squad when he first took over last January and he went on to cap 17 new players in England's 12 Tests in 2012. Northampton flanker Calum Clark, Gloucester centre Billy Twelvetrees and Wasps number eight Billy Vunipola are in line to be next after they were all included in England's RBS 6 Nations plans.

"The bulk of the squad should remain if you look at the quality of players we have got in individual positions and how well they are playing for their clubs as well," Lancaster said. "The majority of the squad should be able to go through way beyond the 2015 World Cup, to be perfectly honest."

There are a number of exciting prospects in the Saxons side who will push for senior selection over the next three years - the likes of Worcester flanker Matt Kvesic and London Irish wing Marland Yarde in particular.

But the emphasis has switched to evolution. Lancaster's aim now is to build on last month's stunning win against New Zealand and deliver on the exciting potential that exists within the England squad.

He added: "So many things have happened in a year but it is interesting to sit here a year on and remember where we were as a group.

"We made 15 changes this time last year. It wasn't just the 15 changes, it was the significance of the number of caps that were left in that side at the time.

"We have a lot of lads like Owen Farrell, Brad Barritt or Manu Tuilagi who are under 25 and should be around for a long time. But you never want to shut the door on some of the Saxons players who have been selected, or lads outside the Saxons at the moment.

"Even now, with the evolution of the team, you see an experienced player like Tom Palmer drop out of the squad and a younger player like Joe Launchbury come in.

"Billy Vunipola is probably a good example of that as well. I think he is someone who has got tremendous potential. It is a key position, number eight, so I want to make sure he is given the development he needs."


From Belfast Telegraph