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England Universities v UK Armed Forces, Wed 17th May, 7pm KO @ Stanningley

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England Universities take on UK Armed Forces on Wednesday 17th May, 7pm KO at Stanningley in the first of two games between the two sides, both of whom are preparing for their respective World Cups in July.

England Universities' selectors will have a final opportunity to view their players before selecting their final 24 players for the Student World Cup, with Head Coach Colin Baker due to name his squad on Friday 19th May. England will field 24 players in the match, with Jake Reed, Carl Southan, Matt Ross and Marcus Stock unavailable owing to exam commitments, whilst James Woodburn-Hall and Jason Bass occupy the injury bench.

UK Armed Forces are at full strength with 22 players, with Head Coach Damian Clayton hoping to give all players some game time to prepare for the World Cup.

For those unable to attend the game it will be livestreamed at:


England's starting 13 will comprise of:

1) Jacob Morgan
2) Nathan Hill
3) Brad Kislingbury
4) Sam Swire
5) Elliot Hall
6) Kieran Smith
7) Ben Stead
8) Josh Halstead
9) Sam Druce
10) Lewis Taylor
11) Jack Lazenby
12) Kieran Sherratt
13) James Mason

Aaron Hall
Charlie Greene
Dan Harrison
Dom Bryan
Harry Kidd
Josh Hamilton
Lewis Lord
Liam Wood
Malikhi Lloyd-Jones
Mike Quickenden
Zack McComb

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England Universities 10 - 22 UK Armed Forces -
Wednesday 17th May, 7pm, Arthur Miller Stadium, Leeds

After an edgy start from both sides in wet conditions, England Universities' Sam Swire powered through after seven minutes on the back of a strong offensive effort from the student side, using his upper body strength to prevent Ryan Matthews and Steve Wicks holing him up over the line. Ben Stead pushed the conversion wide of the mark.
Three minutes later the Armed Forces side hit back, with Adam Flintham charging down Kieran Smith's kick which saw him race through the line to set up an easy conversion for Mattews to nose the millitary men ahead. The Forces nearly extended their lead, but Scott Stevenson was denied a try for a knock on.
Nathan Hill broke through a period of sustained pressure by the Forces to bring the student side back in front, showing his pace to streak away for the touchdown. This time Stead was accurate with the boot.

Both sides slugged it out with a strong forward battle, with the students having the upper hand at the break.
Kieran Smith was denied an early try in the second half for a knock which would have extended the students' lead. England's shape and structure seemed to disappear as Head Coach Colin Baker rotated through his large line of subsitutes to give players a final chance to show their World Cup credentials with selection looming.
An extended period of solid defence from both sides was broken by Simon Wray's sixty metre break up the right flank to level the scores, Matthews missing the conversion. The Forces were in again minutes later as Micky Hoyle charged down a kick and scored. This tme Wray attempted the conversion but was also unsuccessful.
James Hutchinson punished the students further as Flintham and Jamie Birdsall combined to set him free on the left hand side, with a jinking run seeing him crash through the red defenders. Micky Hoyle added the extras. For the remaining ten minutes the students managed to weather a Forces storm as Wray failed to control an interception and Dave Hankinson failed to ground his clever grubber kick.

The match finished with Matthews adding a penalty to compound a poor second half from the students as Jack Lazenby was punished for a high shot on Kev Brown.

England Universities:  Jacob Morgan, Nathan Hill, Brad Kislingbury, Sam Swire, Elliot Hall, Ben Stead, Kieran Smith, Josh Halstead, Sam Druce, Lewis Taylor, Jack Lazenby, Kieran Sheratt, James Mason. Subs: Aaron Hall, Charlie Greene, Dan Harrison, Dom Bryan, Harry Kidd, Josh Hamilton, Lewis Lord, Liam Wood, Malikhi Lloyd-Jones, Zack McComb

Tries: Sam Swire (7),  Nathan Hill (27),
Goals: Ben Stead (1/2)


UK Armed Forces: Scott Stevenson, Simon Wray, Micky Hoyle, James Hutchinson, Mick Halenby, Ryan Matthews, Adam Flintham, Jordan Andrade, Steve Wicks, Ben Mellor, Jamie Birdsall, Ben Carimell, Kev Brown. Subs: Dave Hankinson, Lee Queeley, Gary Dunn, Sam Breeze

Tries: Adam Flintham (10), Simon Wray (65), Micky Hoyle (67), James Hutchinson (71),
Goals: Ryan Matthews (2/3), Simon Wray (0/1), Micky Hoyle (1/1)

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