England will look to extend their winning run against Canada this Sunday


Red Roses v Canada Preview – Autumn Internationals

England will look to extend their 16-game winning run this Sunday, against Canada at the Twickenham Stoop.

The Red Roses last lost in 2019, to New Zealand, but Simon Middleton’s side hit back this autumn as they not only beat the Black Ferns in back-to-back matches but inflicted two record defeats.

Related: Red Roses complete series win over Black Ferns

Canada will come into the match with confidence having beaten the USA twice in Colorado at the start of the month to win the first Pacific Four Series (although neither Australia nor New Zealand were involved this year!).

Yet the last time Canada beat England was in Salt Lake City in 2016 and the Red Roses have defeated their opponents on seven occasions since. It will take a lot for the visitors to stop the momentum England have generated recently, with the Red Roses proving both formidable up front and clinical in attack.

Find out the team news, coaches’ views and TV info in our Red Roses v Canada preview.

What’s the big team news?

There are milestones at different ends of the spectrum for four Red Roses players. Forwards Poppy Cleall and Abbie Ward will make their 50th Test appearances in this match while wing Heather Cowell and back-rower Sadia Kabeya will win their first caps.

The debutants are two of seven changes Simon Middleton has made to the side that completed a series win over the Black Ferns last weekend.

Claudia MacDonald gets another start at scrum-half having impressed in the first Test win over New Zealand in Exeter and Sarah McKenna makes her first appearance in the run-on XV this autumn at full-back. Lagi Tuima comes into the midfield outside the ten-12 axis of Zoe Harrison and Helena Rowland, and it will be interesting to see what that trio can deliver in attack.

Hannah Botterman and Sarah Hunter also return to the pack. Captain Hunter starts at blindside with Cleall retained at No 8, so the balance of the back row – completed by Kabeya – is another area to keep an eye on.

Canada have welcomed full-back Elissa Alarie and back-rowers Fabiola Forteza and Pamphinette Buisa into their match-day 23 as new names have been added to the squad for the matches against England and Wales.

However, they are without star forward Sophie de Goede and prop Mikiela Nelson, who have both been playing for their universities in the U Sports Championship in Canada.

What have the coaches said?

Red Roses head coach Simon Middleton: “I’m delighted with the results and performances of our opening two games against New Zealand, both of which were also fantastic occasions.

“Our attentions have now shifted and we are fully focussed on Sunday’s game against Canada. Canada are a very strong and physical side and we know we need to be at our best to come out on top.”

Canada head coach Sandro Fiorino: “This will be an excellent measuring test for our team. We are coming off of two positive results against the United States and we are looking forward to Sunday’s match, which will be another great opportunity to continue building our squad.”

What time does it kick off and is it on TV?

The match will kick off at 2.30pm UK & Ireland time on Sunday 14 November at the Twickenham Stoop.

Referee Hollie Davidson, assistants Aurelie Groizeleau and Maria Giovanna Pacifico, and TMO Neil Paterson will officiate the match.

The fixture will be available to watch on BBC Two in the UK, with coverage starting at 2pm.

In Canada (kick-off 9.30am ET/6.30am PT) it will be shown live on TSN.ca and the TSN app.

What are the line-ups?

Red Roses: Sarah McKenna; Heather Cowell, Lagi Tuima, Helena Rowland, Abby Dow; Zoe Harrison, Claudia MacDonald; Hannah Botterman, Amy Cokayne, Sarah Bern, Zoe Aldcroft, Abbie Ward, Sarah Hunter (captain), Sadia Kabeya, Poppy Cleall.

Replacements: Lark Davies, Vickii Cornborough, Maud Muir, Harriet Millar-Mills, Alex Matthews, Marlie Packer, Leanne Infante, Holly Aitchison.

Canada: Elissa Alarie; Sabrina Poulin, Sara Kaljuvee, Alexandra Tessier, Paige Farries; Emily Belchos de Goede, Brianna Miller; Olivia DeMerchant (captain), Emily Tuttosi, DaLeaka Menin, Emma Taylor, Courtney Holtkamp, Fabiola Forteza, Karen Paquin, Gabrielle Senft.

Replacements: Laura Russell, Brittany Kassil, Alex Ellis, Tyson Beukeboom, Pamphinette Buisa, Laetitia Royer, Justine Pelletier, Renee Gonzalez.

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