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Parling praised ahead of England’s World Cup opener

Parling praised ahead of England’s World Cup opener

Courtney Lawes insists British & Irish Lion lock Geoff Parling could be the answer to England’s lineout woes ahead of the World Cup.

Courtney Lawes insists British & Irish Lion lock Geoff Parling could be the answer to England’s lineout woes ahead of the World Cup.

The set piece has been an area of concern for Stuart Lancaster’s side during their warm-up games, especially with Dylan Hartley absent from the tournament.

The hooker is an ever-reliable asset in the lineout, while a string of different combinations in the engine room and the back row rarely seemed to click in recent weeks.

However, Lancaster looks to have found his second-row combination in Lawes and lineout veteran Parling – who successfully toured Australia in 2013 – ahead of Friday’s curtain-raiser against Fiji.

And Lawes says 31-year-old Parling provides a safe pair of hands.

“Geoff has done awesome. He runs the lineout really well and brings that stability to the team,” said Lawes.

“It’s a bit of a fight between us (and Joe Launchbury) as to who is going to play but competition makes you better and it has certainly driven us on and made us closer as well.

“It’s not gone exactly to plan but we’ve only played pre-season games. We messed around with players in certain positions and different combinations and it’s hard to get any consistency when you are doing that kind of stuff.

“Coming into the World Cup we will put even more detail on it and I’m sure it will be fine.”

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