x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Vickery back to face Australia

The former captain has been restored to the England starting line-up to face Australia, one of two changes in Martin Johnson's team.

Prop Phil Vickery has been restored to the England front row for the game against Australia at the weekend.
Prop Phil Vickery has been restored to the England front row for the game against Australia at the weekend.

BAGSHOT, ENGLAND // The former captain Phil Vickery has been restored to the England starting line-up to face Australia on Saturday after manager Martin Johnson made two changes from the team that beat the Pacific Islanders last weekend. Vickery, who came of the bench in Saturday's 39-13 victory, swaps places with Matt Stevens, while Tom Palmer comes into the second row alongside captain Steve Borthwick in place of Nick Kennedy, who drops out of the squad after his try-scoring debut.

Hefty lock Simon Shaw is called up to the bench. Vickery and Andrew Sheridan, with former hooker Mark Regan, were the starting front row when England destroyed Australia's scrum in their 2007 World Cup quarter-final in Marseille. The two props, along with number eight Nick Easter and wing Paul Sackey, are the only survivors from the Marseille team of 13 months ago. Johnson resisted the temptation to change his backline despite having Mathew Tait available after he recovered from a hamstring strain that ruled him out of last week's game.

*Reuters