England v South Africa, Twickenham, November 27
Moody back to skipper England
ESPNscrum Staff
November 26, 2010
England captain Lewis Moody takes a breather, England v New Zealand, Twickenham, England, November 6, 2010
Openside Lewis Moody returns to the England line-up to face the Springboks © Getty Images

England manager Martin Johnson has made four changes to his side for Saturday's clash with South Africa at Twickenham.

Openside Lewis Moody returns to the team and reclaims the captaincy with blindside Tom Croft, tight-head Dan Cole and outside centre Mike Tindall also back in the line-up having sat out last weekend's 26-13 victory over Samoa. As a result England will field the same starting XV that memorably swept Australia aside 35-18 earlier this month.

Moody and Croft take over from Hendre Fourie and James Haskell in the back row, Cole replaces David Wilson in the front row and Tindall replaces Matt Banahan in the No.13 shirt. Fourie, Wilson and Banahan are on the bench where Wasps lock Simon Shaw also returns in the place of Gloucester's Dave Attwood.

England are out to end a run of six international defeats against South Africa and were beaten 42-6 at Twickenham in 2008. There are only two survivors from that game in England's starting line-up two years on: Harlequins No.8 Nick Easter and Stade Francais lock Tom Palmer.

South Africa coach Peter De Villiers has resisted the urge to make wholesale changes to his side following their 21-17 loss to Scotland last time out. In minor surgery to the starting line-up, Bulls No.8 Pierre Spies has been recalled ahead of Ryan Kankowski and will link up with Ulster scrum-half Ruan Pienaar, who replaces Francois Hougaard. Tendai Mtawarira has been named at loose-head despite earlier fears that a knee injury would rule him out of contention.

England: B Foden (Northampton); C Ashton (Northampton), M Tindall (Gloucester), S Hape (Bath), M Cueto (Sale); T Flood (Leicester), B Youngs (Leicester); A Sheridan (Sale), D Hartley (Northampton), D Cole (Leicester), C Lawes (Northampton), T Palmer (Stade Francais), T Croft (Leicester), L Moody (Bath, capt), N Easter (Harlequins).

Replacements: S Thompson (Leeds), D Wilson (Bath), S Shaw (Wasps), H Fourie (Leeds), D Care (Harlequins), C Hodgson (Sale), M Banahan (Bath)

South Africa: Z Kirchner (Blue Bulls); G Aplon (Western Province), F Steyn (Racing Metro), J de Villiers (Western Province), L Mvovo (Sharks); M Steyn (Blue Bulls), R Pienaar (Ulster); T Mtawarira (Sharks), B du Plessis (Sharks), J du Plessis (Sharks), B Botha (Blue Bulls), V Matfield (Blue Bulls, capt), D Stegmann (Blue Bulls), J Smith (Cheetahs), P Spies (Blue Bulls)

Replacements: A Strauss (Cheetahs), CJ van der Linde (Cheetahs), F van der Merwe (Blue Bulls), W Alberts (Sharks), F Hougaard (Blue Bulls), P Lambie (Sharks), A Jacobs (Sharks)

Referee: George Clancy (Ireland)

Assistant referees: Peter Fitzgibbon (Ireland), Simon McDowell (Ireland)
Television Match Official: Iain Ramage (Scotland)

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