Leinster’s Ben Te’o named in England squad for Australia tour
New Zealand-born centre one of four uncapped players for three Test tour
Leinster centre Ben Te’o has been named in England’s squad to tour Australia this summer. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho
Te’o is among four uncapped players in Eddie Jones’s 32-man selection for the three-Test tour. The 29-year-old from Auckland, who will leave Leinster after next week’s Guinness Pro 12 final against Connacht in Edinburgh to join Worcester, is joined by Northampton’s backrow forward Teimana Harrison, Leicester’s tighthead prop Ellis Genge and the Harlequins prop Kyle Sinckler.
Manu Tuilagi is selected despite picking up a hamstring injury.
Tuilagi incurred the injury during Leicester’s defeat by Saracens in Saturday’s Aviva Premiership semi-final at Allianz Park and it is understood the initial prognosis is that he will be sidelined for six weeks.
Owen Farrell, who suffered a rib problem in the same match, is also present.
The biggest casualty of the tour is winger Chris Ashton, who has been in stunning try-scoring form since completing the 10-week ban for a neck-roll on Ulster’s Luke Marshall that ruled him out of the Six Nations.
Marland Yarde has been preferred as one of three wings and also included among the backs is Henry Slade, who sat out the recent Grand Slam success because of a broken leg.
Jones insists picking Yarde ahead of Ashton was a simple decision.
“It was an easy call to make. Ashton’s done well but there are areas of his game he needs to work on. Chris scores lots of tries, but it’s also about what you do without the ball,” Jones said.
Jones revealed a clearer picture over Tuilagi’s fitness will emerge over the next 48 hours.
“It’s very much in the balance whether he goes on tour or not. He will be examined by Leicester’s staff (on Monday),” Jones said.
“Hopefully by (Monday) or Tuesday we’ll know if he goes on tour or not. We’ll replace Manu if he’s not okay, so Te’o has a great chance to play.”
When asked about Farrell’s fitness, Jones said: “Knowing Owen, it won’t be a problem. He’s probably training now.”
Dan Cole (Leicester), Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter), Jack Clifford (Harlequins), Ellis Genge (Leicester), Jamie George (Saracens), Teimana Harrison (Northampton), Dylan Hartley (Northampton), James Haskell (Wasps), Paul Hill (Northampton), Maro Itoje (Saracens), George Kruis (Saracens), Joe Launchbury (Wasps), Courtney Lawes (Northampton), Matt Mullan (Wasps), Chris Robshaw (Harlequins), Kyle Sinckler (Harlequins), Billy Vunipola (Saracens), Mako Vunipola (Saracens)
Mike Brown (Harlequins), Danny Care (Harlequins), Elliot Daly (Wasps), Owen Farrell (Saracens), George Ford (Bath), Alex Goode (Saracens), Jonathan Joseph (Bath), Jack Nowell (Exeter), Henry Slade (Exeter), Ben Te’o (Leinster/Worcester), Manu Tuilagi (Leicester), Anthony Watson (Bath), Marland Yarde (Harlequins), Ben Youngs (Leicester)