Ben Earl produces dynamic display

1. Joe Marler

Justified his start. Pounced for an important jackal in the opening minutes. Cannot take much credit for his try-scoring header but it was handy. 7/10
Telegraph reader rating: 6.1

2. Jamie George

There were more line-out blemishes and George fumbled on the stroke of half-time after England had gone to the corner. Remains a vital leader nonetheless. 7/10
Telegraph reader rating: 5.9

3. Kyle Sinckler

Robust enough in the scrum and often on hand to carry or pull-back passes. Grew into the game and almost sent Lawes clear in the second half. 6/10
Telegraph reader rating: 5.3

4. Maro Itoje

Rose to pressurise Japan’s throw before Ludlam’s try and then had a trundle up-field. Thumping tackle earned a turnover. 7/10
Telegraph reader rating: 5.9

5. Ollie Chessum

Quietly excellent in the opening game and dovetailed well with Lawes and Itoje at the line-out, helping to spoil Japan’s platform. 7/10
Telegraph reader rating: 6.0

6. Courtney Lawes (c) 

Phenomenal against Argentina and full of big contributions here. He nabbed a line-out to end the first quarter, carried prominently and stayed alert to score. 7/10
Telegraph reader rating: 6.9

7. Ben Earl

Collared for penalties that brought Japan’s first six points and part of a line-out mix-up but England’s leading light thereafter. Effervescent as the game broke up. 8/10
Telegraph reader rating: 7.8

8. Lewis Ludlam

Steve Borthwick’s dogged utility man barged over for a vital try and was characteristically industrious. Did knock on with his last act, which was unfortunate. 7/10
Telegraph reader rating: 6.4


Theo Dan for George, 74

Ellis Genge for Marler, 59

Will Stuart for Sinckler, 50

George Martin for Lawes, 64

Billy Vunipola for Ludlam, 50

Ben Youngs for Mitchell, 59

Marcus Smith for Steward, 69

Ollie Lawrence for Tuilagi, 69

The bench men overpowered Japan, justifying the manner in which Steve Borthwick ordered his squad of 23. Youngs and Smith were particularly sharp as Vunipola and Genge brought punch, landing a bonus point for England. Martin has settled into his role nicely as well.


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