Rugby Union: Dissatisfied England delay Twickenham selection: Cooke calls time out after lucky win at Murrayfield while Scotland and Wales suffer injury setbacks

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The Independent Online
ENGLAND'S team selection for the Irish game at Twickenham on Saturday week has been put back from today until next weekend because of the selectors' dissatisfaction with the performance in the 15-14 win over Scotland.

'We need time to reflect and update our injury situation, to let the dust settle,' Geoff Cooke, the England manager, said. England were without Jeremy Guscott, Dean Richards and Tim Rodber at Murrayfield, and there is an outside chance Rodber could be fit for consideration in the back row.

Those who played at Murrayfield came through without injury other than to their pride, after Jonathan Callard's last-kick penalty had fortuitously won them the game. When the squad train again next Sunday they can expect a rough ride from their coach, Dick Best.

The Scots, who have lost their first two Five Nations matches, will probably be without Rob Wainwright, their try-scorer on Saturday, when they play Ireland on 5 March and possibly also when they meet France two weeks later. The back-row forward has a broken cheekbone.

The biggest sufferers are Wales, who already know they will be without their captain, Ieuan Evans, against France on Saturday week and perhaps also the 100th England-Wales match at Twickenham on 19 March, when his team will be seeking a first Welsh Triple Crown since 1988 after adding a 17-15 win in Ireland to their previous defeat of Scotland.

Evans dislocated his left shoulder towards the end of the match, a desperate stroke of ill-fortune for a player who has dislocated his other shoulder five times. The other wing, Wayne Proctor, will not play again this season after a double fracture of his jaw.

Nigel Davies is doubtful for the French match because of a groin strain but Anthony Clement, who may now move from full-back to Davies' centre place, will have recovered from his calf strain. The Welsh choice is due to be named tomorrow but it will be no surprise if, like England's, it is delayed.

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