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Georgia name team to face England in Autumn Nations Cup

Georgia name team to face England in Autumn Nations Cup

Georgia name team to face England in Autumn Nations Cup

Georgia head coach Levan Maisashvili has named a side with a mixture of youth and experience for their Autumn Nations Cup curtain-raiser against England at Twickenham.

Four changes have been made to the pack that faced Scotland in a warm-up game at BT Murrayfield last month, which ended in a 48-7 victory for the hosts.

Mikheil Nariashvili keeps his place as prop but hooker Shalva Mamukashvili is promoted from the bench while Beka Gigashvili returns at tighthead after missing out against Scotland.

In the second row, Grigor Kerdikoshvili will be joined by Lasha Jaiani, who missed out on the matchday completely against Scotland, as both locks add to their two caps apiece so far.

The back row will be comprised of Beka Gorgadze, Beka Saginadze and Giorgi Tkhilaishvili, who has also been promoted from the bench for the trip to the Six Nations champions.

Maisashvili has also made four changes to the backline that faced Scotland, with talented utility back and U20 graduate Sandro Svanidze selected for his first senior cap at No.11.

The second winger is Akaki Tabutsadze, who scored a try against Scotland, while captain Merab Sharikadze and Giorgi Kveseladze will form the midfield partnership for the Lelos.

Meanwhile, full back Lasha Khmaladze has recovered from his injury to start along with scrum-half Gela Aprasidze and fly-half Tedo Abzhandadze, who come in as the half-backs.

The bench includes hooker Jaba Bregvadze and prop Lexo Kaulashvili, who had started the Scotland match, along with prop Guram Gogichashvili.

Otar Giorgadze and Tornike Jalaghonia provide further cover for the forward pack while scrum-half Vasil Lobzhanidze and backs Deme Tapladze and Sandro Todua are also on the bench.

Georgia’s tournament opener against the Red Rose will be the third time the two sides have met, following England’s victories in the 2003 and 2011 Rugby World Cups.

Georgia: 15. Lasha Khmaladze, 14. Akaki Tabutsadze, 13. Giorgi Kveseladze, 12. Merab Sharikadze (captain), 11. Sandro Svanidze, 10. Tedo Abzhandadze, 9. Gela Aprasidze; 1. Mikheil Nariashvili, 2. Shalva Mamukashvili, 3. Beka Gigashvili, 4. Lasha Jaiani, 5. Grigor Kerdikoshvili, 6. Beka Saginadze, 7. Giorgi Tkhilaishvili, 8. Beka Gorgadze

Replacements: 16. Jaba Bregvadze, 17. Guram Gogichashvili, 18. Lexo Kaulashvili, 19. Otar Giorgadze, 20. Tornike Jalagonia; 21. Vasil Lobzhanidze, 22. Deme Tapladze, 23. Sandro Todua

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