Red Roses Squad for 2021 World Cup
The England Women’s squad for the Rugby World Cup 2021 in New Zealand has been named.
Sarah Hunter captains the 32-player group, which comprises of 19 forwards and 13 backs.
The squad includes six who were part of the 2014 World Cup winning squad, while 19 members of the group are set to make their maiden World Cup appearances in New Zealand.
The Red Roses face Fiji in their opening pool C game (Saturday 8 October, Eden Park, Auckland, KO 1645 local time/0445 UK time). They then take on France (Saturday 15 October, Northland Events Centre, Whangarei, KO 2000 local time/ 0800 UK time) before returning to Auckland for their final pool fixture against South Africa (Sunday 23 October, Waitakere Stadium, KO 1745 local time/0545 UK time).
Head coach Simon Middleton said: “First and foremost I would like to start by acknowledging those who have missed out on selection. There is not one single player in the wider squad who hasn’t given their all. Nobody has given less than their absolute best, they should be proud of their efforts throughout the team's campaign to date.
“If between now and the tournament, or during the World Cup, we have to call anyone up, we can do it with 100% confidence that we are bringing a top player in.
“I would like to say a huge congratulations to those who have made the squad. To earn selection means you have done some special things and you have been outstanding in your application to training and performances.
“We are really confident with the balance of the squad. I am pleased with the way the team is gelling and how our game is coming together. There is still plenty to work on, we expect to improve game-on-game.
“While this is a squad announcement and not about singling out individuals, it would be remiss not to reference our captain, Sarah Hunter. Sarah is a better captain now than she has ever been. She has owned the captaincy and how she represents the squad on and off the field is absolutely brilliant. When you work with someone for so long you sometimes need to remind yourself of her outstanding attributes, she is unbelievable in how she conducts herself. Her pride in and love of representing her country is as strong as ever. She is a class act and we are very fortunate to have her leading the side at this tournament.”
England squad for Rugby World Cup 2021
Zoe Aldcroft (Gloucester-Hartpury, 32 caps)
Sarah Bern (Bristol Bears, 46 caps)
Hannah Botterman (Saracens, 30 caps)
Shaunagh Brown (Harlequins, 27 caps)
Poppy Cleall (Saracens, 57 caps)
Amy Cokayne (Harlequins, 64 caps)
Vickii Cornborough (Harlequins, 70 caps)
Lark Davies (Bristol Bears, 41 caps)
Rosie Galligan (Harlequins, 7 caps)
Sarah Hunter (C; Loughborough Lightning, 135 caps)
Sadia Kabeya (Loughborough Lightning, 4 caps)
Laura Keates (University of Worcester Warriors, 62 caps)
Alex Matthews (Gloucester-Hartpury, 51 caps)
Maud Muir (Gloucester-Hartpury, 11 caps)
Cath O’Donnell (Loughborough Lightning, 20 caps)
Marlie Packer (Saracens, 84 caps)
Connie Powell (Gloucester-Hartpury, 5 caps)
Morwenna Talling (Loughborough Lightning, 4 caps)
Abbie Ward (Bristol Bears, 56 caps)
Holly Aitchison (Saracens, 10 caps)
Jess Breach (Saracens, 23 caps)
Abby Dow (Wasps, 24 caps)
Zoe Harrison (Saracens, 40 caps)
Tatyana Heard (Gloucester-Hartpury, 5 caps)
Leanne Infante (Saracens, 52 caps)
Ellie Kildunne (Harlequins, 25 caps)
Claudia MacDonald (Exeter Chiefs, 20 caps)
Sarah McKenna (Saracens, 42 caps)
Lucy Packer (Harlequins, 5 caps)
Helena Rowland (Loughborough Lightning, 5 caps)
Emily Scarratt (VC; Loughborough Lightning, 103 caps)
Lydia Thompson (University of Worcester Warriors, 54 caps)