Eight changes in Georgia team to meet England
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LONDON - Georgia have strengthened their pack but will have a new cap on the wing when they meet England.
Captain Merab Sharikadze’s opening Autumn Nations Cup clash against last year’s losing Rugby World Japan finalists England will be played at Twickenham on Saturday.
Coach Levan Maisashvili named Sandro Svanidze, a graduate of the country’s under-20 team, on the wing for a first cap while former Exeter University lock Lasha Jaiani will play for only the third time after being brought into the squad following their 48-7 loss to Scotland in a warm-up test last month.
They are among eight changes from the side that lost at Murrayfield on Oct. 23.
Hooker Shalva Mamukashvili, a veteran of 75 caps, is restored to the front row while tighthead prop Beka Gigashvili and fullback Lasha Khmaladze return after injury.
Giorgi Tkhilaishvili is back on the flank with Giorgi Kveseladze to play at centre and Gela Aprasidze preferred to Vasil Lobzhanidze at scrumhalf.
Here is #TheLelos SQUAD to face #England 🌹— Georgian Rugby (@GeorgianRugby) November 12, 2020
🏴 v 🇬🇪 @autumnnations Cup 🏆🍁🍂
14/11/2020 | KO 19:00 (GMT+4)
Fact: Sandro Svanidze to win 1st Senior International Cap on Saturday 🧢 pic.twitter.com/xvDWor8eXM
Georgia replaced Japan in the field for the new tournament and meet England for only the third time, having conceded 125 points in their previous meetings, both at World Cup tournaments.
The Georgia team to play England is:
15-Lasha Khmaladze, 14-Akaki Tabutsadze, 13-Giorgi Kveseladze, 12-Merab Sharikadze (capt), 11-Sandro Svanidze, 10-Tedo Abzhandadze, 9-Gela Aprasidze, 8-Beka Gorgadze, 7-Giorgi Tkhilaishvili, 6-Beka Saghinadze, 5-Grigol Kerdikoshvili, 4-Lasha Jaiani, 3-Beka Gigashvili, 2-Shalva Mamukashvili, 1-Mikheil Nariashvili
16-Jaba Bregvadze, 17-Guram Gogichashvili, 18-Lexo Kaulashvili, 19-Otar Giorgadze, 20-Tornike Jalagonia, 21-Vasil Lobzhanidze, 22-Deme Tapladze, 23-Sandro Todua.