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Women’s Six Nations: England v Scotland – Helena Rowland starts at 10, Zoe Harrison out

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Helena Rowland is also part of the GB sevens squad preparing for this summer’s Tokyo Olympics
Venue: Castle Park, Doncaster Date: Saturday 3 April Kick-off: 15:00 BST
Coverage: Watch on BBC iPlayer; listen on BBC Radio 5 Live Sports Extra and follow live text commentary on the BBC Sport website and app.

England’s Helena Rowland will start at 10 in Saturday’s Women’s Six Nations opener against Scotland, while Zoe Harrison drops out of the matchday 23 after breaching coronavirus protocols.

Players must file a health report daily and Harrison lost her place because she failed to do this three times.

Wasps fly-half Meg Jones will fill the gap on the bench.

Centre Emily Scarratt captains the side as regular skipper Sarah Hunter continues her return from injury.

Hunter played for club Loughborough Lightning last weekend but has not recovered sufficiently from a hamstring strain for international duty.

Bryony Cleall – twin sister of starting number eight Poppy – will earn her second cap at tight-head prop as 2020 Grand Slam champions England begin their campaign at Doncaster’s Castle Park.

Cleall is joined by loose-head prop Vickii Cornborough and hooker Lark Davies, and in the second row Cath O’Donnell will make her first England appearance since 2019 following a long-term knee ligament injury.

Full-back Sarah McKenna, wing Lydia Thompson and flanker Zoe Aldcroft return to the starting XV after missing the autumn internationals.

Wing Abby Dow misses the match because of personal reasons.

After being postponed from its usual February-March window, the Women’s Six Nations is being played in a reduced format for 2021.

Teams are split into two pools and play two group games before a final weekend of fixtures to decide placings.

England beat Scotland 53-0 in the 2020 Women’s Six Nations but head coach Simon Middleton is expecting greater competition this time.

“[Scotland captain] Rachel Malcolm said they are not daunted about playing us,” he said.

“They shouldn’t be because they’re a really good side. It will be a great contest. They will be climbing the walls before they get out of the changing rooms and we will be much the same.”

England team to face Scotland

England: McKenna; Thompson, Scarratt (capt), Tuima, Breach; Rowland, Riley; Cornborough, Davies, B Cleall, Ward, O’Donnell, Aldcroft, Packer, P Cleall.

Replacements: Cokayne, Harper, Brown, Millar-Mills, Fleetwood, MacDonald, Jones, Kildunne.

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