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Saxons include Banahan and Armitage

Matt Banahan and Delon Armitage have both been named in the England Saxons training squad for Saturday's clash with Irish Wolfhounds in Exeter.

Winger Banahan and full-back Armitage both played in last year's World Cup but must content themselves with a place among the second string, along with winger Ugo Monye and back-rower Thomas Waldrom.

Centre Matt Hopper, scrum-half Paul Hodgson, prop Rupert Harden, lock Ed Slater and flanker Kearnan Myall are new additions to the squad.

Hodgson and Harden are temporary injury replacements for Karl Dickson and Henry Thomas, while Hopper, Slater and Myall replace Henry Trinder, Geoff Parling and Dave Attwood, who are attending senior squad training in Leeds this week.

Hopper's selection comes after just 11 first-team games for Harlequins.

"This squad has got a great deal of longevity," said England Saxons coach Jon Callard.

"They've all got something to offer the national team, whether they're coming down from the senior squad, they've been injured, or if they're young players going up. Everyone's got a contribution to make and it's all about the future."

England Saxons squad:

Backs: N Abendanon (Bath), D Armitage (London Irish), M Banahan (Bath), F Burns (Gloucester), M Hopper (Harlequins), P Hodgson (London Irish), R Lamb (Northampton), J May (Gloucester), U Monye (Harlequins), B Twelvetrees (Leicester), M Young (Leicester).

Forwards: C Brooker (Harlequins), P Doran-Jones (Northampton), M Garvey (London Irish), J Gaskell (Sale), J Gray (Harlequins), R Harden (Gloucester), T Johnson (Exeter), M Mullan (Worcester), K Myall (Sale), G Robson (Harlequins), A Saull (Saracens), E Slater (Leicester), T Waldrom (Leicester), N Wood (Gloucester).


From Belfast Telegraph