Heineken Cup final 2014: Steve Borthwick fit to captain Saracens after lock is named in starting line-up despite pectoral injury
Former England skipper will hang up his boots at the end of the season but could do so with a league and cup double under hit belt
Friday 23 May 2014
Captain Steve Borthwick has been named in the Saracens team for Saturday's Heineken Cup final against holders Toulon in Cardiff.
Borthwick suffered a pectoral muscle injury and went off during the second half of Saracens' Aviva Premiership play-off victory over Harlequins last weekend.
Saracens rugby director Mark McCall described Borthwick's prospects earlier this week of being fit for the final as 50-50.
But Saracens confirmed in a team announcement on Friday that he will line up in his familiar second-row position when they bid to become the fifth English European champions after Bath, Northampton, Leicester and Wasps.
Former England skipper Borthwick will retire at the end of this season, with Saracens having two games left - the Heineken Cup final and an Premiership final showdown with Northampton at Twickenham in eight days' time.
McCall has made just one change from the side that accounted for Quins, with scrum-half Richard Wigglesworth in for Neil de Kock, who is on the replacements' bench.
Like Borthwick, England's 2003 World Cup hero Jonny Wilkinson will step down from the game later this month, and he captains Toulon as they bid for a second successive European title.
Fly-half Wilkinson leads a side that shows a solitary switch from the Heineken semi-final victory over Munster last month, with South African lock Bakkies Botha replacing Jocelino Suta.
Toulon parade their galaxy of world-class talent, including Wilkinson, centre Matt Giteau, wing Bryan Habana and prop Carl Hayman, while a successful Heineken Cup defence would see them join Leicester and Leinster as the only teams to achieve that feat.
Teams for Toulon versus Saracens, Heineken Cup final, Millennium Stadium, Saturday, 5pm.
Toulon: D Armitage; D Mitchell, M Bastareaud, M Giteau, B Habana; J Wilkinson (capt), S Tillous-Borde; X Chiocci, C Burden, C Hayman, B Botha, D Rossouw, J Smith, J M Fernandez Lobbe, S Armitage.
Replacements: J-C Orioli, A Menini, M Castrogiovanni, A Williams, V Bruni, M Mermoz, M Claassens, J Suta.
Saracens: A Goode; C Ashton, M Bosch, B Barritt, D Strettle; O Farrell, R Wigglesworth; M Vunipola, S Brits, M Stevens, S Borthwick (capt), A Hargreaves, K Brown, J Burger, B Vunipola.
Replacements: J George, R Barrington, J Johnston, M Botha, J Wray, N de Kock, C Hodgson, C Wyles.
Referee: Alain Rolland (Ireland).
Assistant referees: Nigel Owens (Wales) and George Clancy (Ireland).
Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao: The biggest fight of all time, or maybe just the most lucrative?
Frank Lampard's face drops when Holly Willoughby introduces him as a 'Man City legend'
What time does Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao start?
Arsenal transfer targets: The summer signings that would please Thierry Henry, including Sami Khedira and Edinson Cavani
Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao: What time does it start and where can I watch it?
- 1 Migrant crisis: Greek soldier saved 20 people singlehandedly off Rhodes beach
- 2 Frank Lampard's face drops when Holly Willoughby introduces him as a 'Man City legend'
- 3 UK weather: Britain braced for snow as arctic air mass moves in
- 5 General Election 2015: Stephen Hawking says he will vote Labour
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
Andrew Lloyd Webber: Phantom of the Opera writer mocked after issuing a warning about Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon
General election 2015: Labour will toughen hate crimes legislation surrounding Islamophobia
HSBC review into moving headquarters from UK 'underway'