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Rugby | Springboks

England set for South Africa changes



England coach Stuart Lancaster is in line to make at least four changes to his side for Saturday's one-off international against South Africa at Twickenham.

Back-row forwards Thomas Waldrom and Tom Johnson, plus wing Charlie Sharples have all been dropped from the 23-man match-day squad after starting in England's 20-14 defeat by Australia last weekend.

Meanwhile loose-head prop Joe Marler has been ruled out with a knee ligament injury, paving the way for Alex Corbisiero's test return from a knee injury of his own.

Back-rows James Haskell and Ben Morgan have both been included in the squad for the first time this European autumn series, replacing Waldrom and Johnson, while London Irish centre Jonathan Joseph has taken Sharples's place after overcoming an ankle injury.

"We have made some changes this week to freshen up the squad before the challenge of South Africa," Lancaster said.

"Unfortunately that means one or two players miss out who were in the match day squad against Australia.

"But they have all added value with their contributions in training and the games and I am sure they will be looking to play well for their clubs and force their way back in.

"The changes however give opportunities to those who have been pushing hard and we feel will add energy and balance to the team ahead of the significant South African challenge."

Mouritz Botha has been added to the squad as injury cover for Geoff Parling, who is nursing a knee problem but England expect the lock to be fit.

Lancaster is due to announce his starting XV on Thursday, a day after Springbok counterpart Heyneke Meyer, whose side beat Scotland 21-10 at Murrayfield last weekend, unveils his team.

ENGLAND SQUAD

Backs: Chris Ashton (Saracens), Brad Barritt (Saracens), Mike Brown (Harlequins), Danny Care (Harlequins), Owen Farrell (Saracens), Toby Flood (Leicester), Alex Goode (Saracens), Jonathan Joseph (London Irish), Manu Tuilagi (Leicester), Ben Youngs (Leicester)

Forwards: Mouritz Botha (Saracens), Alex Corbisiero (London Irish), Dan Cole (Leicester), James Haskell (Wasps), Joe Launchbury (Wasps), Ben Morgan (Gloucester), David Paice (London Irish), Tom Palmer (Wasps), Geoff Parling (Leicester), Chris Robshaw (Harlequins, capt), Mako Vunipola (Saracens), David Wilson (Bath), Tom Wood (Northampton), Tom Youngs (Leicester)

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