Preview and teams: France Women v England Women

England women coach Craig Richards has named nine players from the treble-winning St Helens side in his team to take on France in Perpignan on Saturday.

The historic occasion will be broadcast live on BBC2 at midday, the first time a women’s international has been broadcast on terrestrial TV.

Captain Emily Rudge, one of the Saints’ contingent, will win a record 24th cap.

She is joined by Woman of Steel Jodie Cunningham and Rachael Woosey, who will make her international debut after switching from rugby union.

York centre Savannah Andrade is another debutant, with Castleford, Leeds, Wigan and Huddersfield also represented in the team.

Saturday’s game, which will be part of a double-header with the men’s Test at Stade Gilbert Brutus, was arranged following the postponement of the World Cup which coach Richards says could be a blessing in disguise.

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He said: “We are looking forward to going out there and testing ourselves against tough opposition in France and continuing to develop ahead of next year’s World Cup.

“It would have been good to play the World Cup this year but that extra 12 months allows us to dig a little deeper, ask a little bit more and create a few more challenges within the group.”

France preparation

The two sides last met in Carcassonne back in October 18, with England coming away 54-4 winners.

In their most recent test, France beat Turkey 54-4.

Coach Vincent Baloup said: “This test is an important step in our preparation for the World Cup. We gradually built a group, built a game plan and we are already looking to this match to face one of the best nations in the world: England.”

France played at the 2013 World Cup, suffering heavy losses to New Zealand, Australia and England (twice).

They are in Group B at the 2021 World Cup, now being played in 2022, alongside the Australia, New Zealand and Cook Islands.

France team v England: Ciria, Song Puche, Bianchini, Pastre Courtine, Samarra, Pacull, Varela, Bernard, Mansard, Alvherne, Akpa, Biville, Bessahli. Subs (from): Ramos, Borak, Legout, Kuresa, Canet, Olm Rouppert, Montsarrat.

England team v France: Stanley, Goldthorp, Andrade, Hardcastle, Beevers, Cunningha, Stott, Field, Jones, Crowl, Rudge, Dodd, Molyneux. Subs: Hoyle, Travis, Whitfield, Woosey.

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