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White to captain England U20s

Ben White will captain England U20s against Wales U20s on Friday
Ben White will captain England U20s against Wales U20s on Friday

Ben White will captain England for their U20s Six Nations clash with Wales on Friday (kick-off 7.45pm).

Leicester Tigers scrum-half White made his U20s in the 27-17 win against Italy in the opening round win of the championship and retains his place for the second game at Kingston Park.

Head coach Steve Bates said: “Ben White has arrived into the U20 set up with a level of commitment to train and play positively. The way he performed against Italy was outstanding, he was brave, organised, committed and is a great choice for us as captain.”

All five Tigers in the U20s squad are involved, with Joe Heyes coming in for his first cap at U20s level at tighthead prop.

Sam Lewis and Jordan Olowofela make their first starts at U20s level at lock and winger respectively. Fly-half Tom Hardwick, meanwhile, is named on the bench.

Scroll down to watch the LTTV interview with England's five Tigers before they headed off to the U20s Six Nations

Bates has made six changes to the starting XV in all. Centre Cameron Redpath wins his first U20s cap, while Ehren Painter and Aaron Hinkley could do likewise having been named among the replacements.

Redpath, Painter and Hinkley, who are not part of the U20 elite player squad, are brought in as part of the matchday 23 to take on Wales in Newcastle.

Prop Toby Trinder and flanker Josh Basham also start for the first time at U20 level, having also made their debuts against Italy.

Bates said: “We had a good victory against Italy last Friday in difficult conditions and made a solid start to the tournament.

“The players have recovered very quickly from that opening match and the sessions we’ve had this week have been extremely competitive and focused.

“Some of the changes we’ve made have been enforced as we’ve lost players back to their clubs for the weekend’s Premiership fixtures which is a great opportunity for them.

"Selection for Italy was very close in many positions and choosing the starting XV for Friday against Wales has been just as tough. The players we’ve chosen have performed very well in the first half of the season as well as contributing positively to training this week so they have earned their chance.

“Kingston Park is a quick pitch, which will suit our exciting backs and I’m expecting us to play high-intensity, high-tempo rugby.

England U20 team to face Wales
15 Tom Parton (London Irish)
14 Jordan Olowofela (Leicester Tigers)
13 Fraser Dingwall (Northampton Saints)
12 Cameron Redpath (Sale Sharks)
11 Ben Loader (London Irish)
10 James Grayson (Northampton Saints)
9 Ben White – (c)(Leicester Tigers)
1 Toby Trinder (Northampton Saints)
2 Henry Walker (Gloucester)
3 Joe Heyes (Leicester Tigers)
4 Dino Lamb (Harlequins)
5 Sam Lewis (Leicester Tigers)
6 Josh Basham (London Irish)
7 Tom Willis (Wasps)
8 Sam Moore (Sale Sharks)

16 Gabriel Oghre (Wasps)
17 Alex Seville (Gloucester)
18 Ehren Painter (Northampton Saints)
19 James Scott (Worcester Warriors)
20 Aaron Hinkley (Gloucester)
21 Rory Brand (London Irish)
22 Tom Hardwick (Leicester Tigers)
23 Matt Williams (London Irish)

England U20 Six Nations fixtures and results:

Italy v England: 17-27

England v Wales
Friday 9 February, KO 7.45pm – live on Sky Sports Action
Kingston Park, Newcastle

Scotland v England
Friday 23 February, KO 7.30pm
Myreside, Edinburgh

France v England 
Friday 9 March, KO 9pm (8pm GMT)
Stade de la Mediterranee, Beziers

England v Ireland 
Friday 16 March, KO 8pm – live on Sky Sports Action
Ricoh Arena, Coventry