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Northampton Saints sign Canadian prop Ilnicki

Jake Ilnicki. Credit: PA

Northampton Saints have signed Canadian prop Jake Ilnicki on a deal until the end of the season.

The 24-year-old was part of the Canada squad for last year's World Cup and featured in their recent autumn international against Ireland.

Ilnicki has played in New Zealand, Australia and America so far in his career and will make his Saints 'A' team debut against Leicester tonight.

Cambridge men claim first Varsity win since 2009

Cambridge celebrate their win. Credit: PA
  • Cambridge University 23-18 Oxford University

Cambridge University's men's rugby team are celebrating their first win over Oxford since 2009.

The Light Blues ran out 23-18 winners in a thrilling game at Twickenham, with medical student Mike Phillips and centre Rory Triniman scoring their tries.

Cambridge have endured a terrible record in the recent Varsity matches between the sides, but this year's success means they've now managed 62 victories to Oxford's 59 in the 144-year-old fixture.

Earlier in the day, Oxford got the better of Cambridge in the women's game - winning a dull encounter 3-0.

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Cambridge women's team beaten in Varsity clash

Cambridge were beaten by Oxford. Credit: PA
  • Cambridge University 0-3 Oxford University

Cambridge University's women's rugby team have been beaten by their Oxford counterparts in the annual Varsity match at Twickenham.

A dull game was settled by a single penalty from Catherine Wilcock as the Dark Blues ran out 3-0 winners.

Cambridge won the same fixture last year but couldn't follow up that success this time out.

The men's fixture will kick off at 14:30 with Cambridge aiming to end a six-year losing sequence.

Wood keeps starting spot as England aim for record

Tom Wood will start against Australia. Credit: PA

Northampton Saints flanker Tom Wood has kept his place in the England team for their big game against Australia on Saturday.

He'll be joined by fellow forwards Dylan Hartley and Courtney Lawes in the starting XV, while Norfolk's Ben Youngs has also been named.

Teimana Harrison is on the bench.

A win for England at Twickenham would mean they'd end the year unbeaten - the only country to do so.

  • England team to play Australia

M Brown (Harlequins); M Yarde (Harlequins), J Joseph (Bath), O Farrell (Saracens), J May (Gloucester); G Ford (Bath), B Youngs (Leicester)

M Vunipola (Saracens), D Hartley (Northampton, capt), D Cole (Leicester), C Lawes (Northampton), G Kruis (Saracens), C Robshaw (Harlequins), T Wood (Northampton), N Hughes (Wasps).

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Northampton Saints flanker Wood left out of England squad

Tom Wood in action against South Africa. Credit: PA

Northampton Saints flanker Tom Wood has been left out of the England squad to face Fiji at Twickenham this weekend.

The 30-year-old started last Saturday's 37-21 win over South Africa, but has now been released.

It means Wood will be free to feature in the Saints' Premiership game at Worcester on Friday night.

Fellow Northampton players Dylan Hartley, Courtney Lawes and Teimana Harrison have all been retained by Eddie Jones.

Northampton Saints star Wood makes England return

Tom Wood is back in the England team. Credit: PA

Northampton Saints flanker Tom Wood will make his first appearance for England in more than a year against South Africa this weekend.

The 30-year-old hasn't featured since Head Coach Eddie Jones took over last autumn.

However, a number of injuries have opened the door for him to force his way back into the fold at open-side.

Fellow Saints teammate Courtney Lawes will win his 50th cap for his country after getting the nod at second row, while Dylan Hartley will once again captain the team.

We congratulate Courtney Lawes on his 50-cap milestone – an excellent achievement.

We’re looking forward to the game. Test matches are always about the contest up front and South Africa pride themselves in the set piece but we’ll be ready for the challenge.

– Eddie Jones, England Head coach
  • England team to face South Africa

Mike Brown (Harlequins); Marland Yarde (Harlequins), Elliot Daly (Wasps), Owen Farrell (Saracens), Jonny May (Gloucester Rugby); George Ford (Bath Rugby), Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers); Mako Vunipola (Saracens), Dylan Hartley (Northampton Saints), Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers); Joe Launchbury (Wasps), Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints); Chris Robshaw (Harlequins), Tom Wood (Northampton Saints), Billy Vunipola (Saracens).

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