|Venue: Kingston Park, Newcastle Date: Saturday, 25 March Kick-off: 16:45 GMT|
|Coverage: Watch live on BBC Two, BBC iPlayer and BBC Sport website & app; listen on BBC Radio 5 Live & BBC Sounds; live text commentary on BBC Sport website & app.|
Former Canada prop Mackenzie Carson will make her England debut against Scotland in the Women’s Six Nations on Saturday.
The 24-year-old qualifies for England through her mother and switched countries through World Rugby’s birth-right transfer rules.
Sarah Hunter will co-captain England in her final match before retirement at Newcastle’s sold-out Kingston Park.
Holly Aitchison will start at fly-half, with Zoe Harrison out injured.
Aitchison takes the 10 shirt after Harrison tore her ACL in a season-ending injury and with Helena Rowland still recovering from a foot injury sustained at the 2022 World Cup.
Carson previously played against England in 2018 in one of three Canada caps she earned. She is eligible to join the Red Roses – who are chasing a fifth successive Women’s Six Nations title – after spending at least three years away from international rugby.
Carson fills a gap in the front row left because Vickii Cornborough is missing the tournament for personal reasons and Hannah Botterman is injured.
Middleton experiments after World Cup heartbreak
Head coach Simon Middleton – who will step down after the Women’s Six Nations – has brought in some fresh faces after his side narrowly lost the World Cup final to New Zealand.
Middleton’s experimentation is perhaps a reflection of the expected scoreline. Long-term professionals England beat Scotland, who received contracts last year, 57-5 in the 2022 Women’s Six Nations.
Aitchison is joined in the midfield by two players who did not make the World Cup squad. Amber Reed will start at 12 and Lagi Tuima at 13.
Uncapped scrum-half Ella Wyrwas awaits her debut from the bench as Lucy Packer starts, with the more experienced Leanne Infante left out and Natasha Hunt unable to make her England return because of a calf injury.
Lock Rosie Galligan will miss the tournament with a hamstring injury and Poppy Cleall starts in the second row, with Abbie Ward also absent after announcing her pregnancy.
Sadia Kabeya and co-captain Marlie Packer are alongside Hunter in the back row, while Abby Dow, Jess Breach and Claudia MacDonald make up the back three. Twice-capped Emma Sing will provide back-three cover on the bench.
Also among the replacements, loose-head prop Liz Crake and tight-head Kelsey Clifford await their first caps.
Middleton described Galligan’s injury as “a significant blow” and said it was “hugely disappointing” that Hunt was not available this week, but added that she would return “later in the tournament”.
“This is a very new squad and they have been asked to train hard and learn fast over the last three weeks,” Middleton continued.
“This week we’ve really been able to see the cohesion starting to develop and we can’t wait for the team to get out there on Saturday.”
England team to face Scotland
England: Dow; Breach, Tuima, Reed, MacDonald; Aitchison, Packer; Carson, Cokayne, Bern, Aldcroft, P Cleall, Kabeya, Packer (co-capt), Hunter (co-capt).
Replacements: Davies, Crake, Clifford, O’Donnell, Beckett, Wyrwas, Heard, Sing.