England women’s Rugby Union head coach Simon Middleton has named Marlie Packer has one of his 10 changes for todays game against Canada at Castle Park Doncaster.
Parker is a somewhat surprising inclusion following her recent trail in which she pleaded guilty to the charge of Drink Driving after being found twice over the legal limit after colliding with another car in September. She has since been sentenced to 17 months driving ban which will be reduced to 14 on completion of an awareness course.
Flanker Parker comes into the side that defeated the USA 57-5 last week, alongside her Saracen’s team mate Poppy Cleall with Sarah Hunter at number eight to form a formidable back row. In the rest of the pack prop Hannah Botterman and second row forward Catherine O’Donnell also come into the starting 15.
The back line see’s Millie Wood make her first start for her country in the unaccustomed position of winger, while Zoe Harrison takes over at fly half with Katy Daley-McLean demoted to the bench.
Canada who are ranked fourth in the world at the moment will be looking to earn some pay back for the three nil series whitewash they suffered at the hands of England in their own back yard last November, before they go on to play Wales and Scotland over the next 10 days.
With Middleton already commenting on the current strength in depth at his disposal as he went on record to state;
“The competition for places is really tough within the squad and that's great to see. There were some excellent individual performances against the USA and I will expect to see the same against Canada,”
The game is also one of the final chances for the women to stack a claim for one of the 28 full time 15 a side contracts that will be issued in January, with their final chance coming in next weeks game against Ireland at Twickenham.
McKenna; Wood, Attwood, Burford, Smith; Harrison, Riley; Cornborough, Davies, Botterman, O'Donnell, Scott, Cleall, Packer, Hunter (c).
Kerr, Perry, Brown, Aldcroft, Brown, Macdonald, Daley-Mclean, Williams