Recently crowed World Women’s player of the year Emily Scarratt has been named as England’s vice captain for their first autumn international when they take on France in Clermont on Saturday.
The team which will be led by the experienced number eight Sarah Hunter and will play at the Stade Marcel Michelin stadium. While Wasps Ladies Abby Dow, Darlington Mowden Park Sharks' Heather Kerr and Gloucester-Hartpury Women forward Ellena Perry are included after their impressive starts to the Premier 15s season.
The game is the first of three fixtures for the England Women’s side, who will face France in a return fixture on November 16th at Exeter’s Sandy Park before taking on Italy in their final game of the year at Goldington Road in Bedford.
Speaking at the announcement Women’s head coach Simon Middleton told how he expects a battle royal this weekend;
“Outside of New Zealand, France is one of the toughest places to go and play. It's a massive challenge, but it's what we want, and we can't wait to get there. We play them away again in our opening match at next year's Six Nations, so it'll be a good marker of where we are,
England women's rugby squad
Forwards: Zoe Aldcroft (Gloucester-Hartpury Women), Sarah Beckett (Harlequins Women), Sarah Bern (Bristol Bears Women), Hannah Botterman (Saracens Women), Shaunagh Brown (Harlequins Women), Poppy Cleall (Saracens Women), Lark Davies (Loughborough Lightning), Vicky Fleetwood (Saracens Women), Sarah Hunter (Loughborough Lightning), Heather Kerr (Darlington Mowden Park Sharks), Marlie Packer (Saracens Women), Ellena Perry (Gloucester-Hartpury Women), Abbie Scott (Harlequins Women), Detysha Harper (Loughborough Lightning: non-playing reserve).
Backs: Jess Breach (Harlequins Women), Katy Daley-Mclean (Loughborough Lightning), Abby Dow (Wasps FC Ladies), Zoe Harrison (Saracens Women), Natasha Hunt (Gloucester-Hartpury Women), Sarah McKenna (Saracens Women), Leanne Riley (Harlequins Women), Emily Scarratt (Loughborough Lightning), Emily Scott (Harlequins Women), Lydia Thompson (Worcester Warriors Women).