New Zealand vs England: Fin Baxter replaces injured Joe Marler in tourists' only change for second Test

10 July 2024, 15:08 | Updated: 11 July 2024, 07:26

Fin Baxter will make his first start for England in place of the injured Joe Marler in the only change to England's line-up for Saturday's crucial second and final Test against New Zealand, live on Sky Sports.

The Harlequins prop came off the bench for his senior debut last Saturday in England's narrow 16-15 loss to the All Blacks in the first Test in Dunedin, replacing club team-mate Marler, who has a foot injury.

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Bevan Rodd is installed on the bench, where he joins Dan Cole, who is poised to make his 115th international appearance and become England's second-most capped men's player of all time after Ben Youngs.

England face the daunting task of attempting to become the first side to beat New Zealand at Eden Park for 30 years as they bid to level the series.

"Eden Park is a stadium packed with history and with memories of great rugby encounters, and we are delighted to be playing there on Saturday in what I anticipate will be another excellent Test," said England head coach Steve Borthwick.

"New Zealand has a formidable record at this venue, but with that comes the pressure of expectation. It will be interesting to see how New Zealand manages that expectation in front of a full house.

"I'd like to pay special tribute to Dan Cole who will become England's second most capped men's player of all time on the weekend.

"Dan has shown nothing but dedication and determination throughout his career, and reaching this milestone is a remarkable feat. He is a superb rugby player, a wonderful role model, and we all look forward to sharing a memorable day with him on Saturday."

Scrum-half Finlay Christie is the only new face in the New Zealand starting line-up, replacing the injured TJ Perenara, with the uncapped Cortez Ratima taking his place on the bench.

How the two sides will line up

England: 15 George Furbank, 14 Immanuel Feyi-Waboso, 13 Henry Slade, 12 Ollie Lawrence, 11 Tommy Freeman, 10 Marcus Smith, 9 Alex Mitchell; 1 Fin Baxter, 2 Jamie George (c), 3 Will Stuart, 4 Maro Itoje, 5 George Martin, 6 Chandler Cunningham-South, 7 Sam Underhill, 8 Ben Earl

Replacements: 16 Theo Dan, 17 Bevan Rodd, 18 Dan Cole, 19 Alex Coles, 20 Tom Curry, 21 Ben Spencer, 22 Fin Smith, 23 Ollie Sleightholme

New Zealand: 15 Stephen Perofeta, 14 Sevu Reece, 13 Rieko Ioane, 12 Jordie Barrett, 11 Mark Tele'a, 10 Damian McKenzie, 9 Finlay Christie; 1 Ethan de Groot, 2 Codie Taylor, 3 Tyrel Lomax, 4 Scott Barrett (c), 5 Patrick Tuipulotu, 6 Samipeni Finau, 7 Dalton Papali'i, 8 Ardie Savea

Replacements: 16 Asafo Aumua, 17 Ofa Tu'ungafasi, 18 Fletcher Newell, 19 Tupou Vaa'i, 20 Luke Jacobson, 21 Cortez Ratima, 22 Anton Lienert-Brown, 23 Beauden Barrett

England's summer fixtures

  • Saturday June 22 - Japan 17-52 England
  • Saturday July 6 - New Zealand 16-15 England
  • Saturday July 13 - vs New Zealand (8.05am), live on Sky Sports

Watch the second Test between New Zealand and England at Auckland's Eden Park on Saturday July 13 live on Sky Sports Action from 7.30am; kick-off 8.05am. Also stream contract-free with NOW.