Wales v England: Ellis Genge will not change as he fills in for Mako Vunipola

By Chris JonesBBC rugby union correspondent
Ellis Genge takes on Samoa's Dwayne Polataivao
Ellis Genge has been nicknamed the 'Baby Rhino' because of his rumbustious playing style
Six Nations: Wales v England
Venue: Principality Stadium, Cardiff Date: Saturday, 23 February Kick-off: 16:45 GMT
Coverage: Live on BBC One, S4C, BBC Radio 5 live, BBC Radio Wales, BBC Radio Cymru & BBC Sport website and BBC Sport app, plus live text commentary.

England loose-head prop Ellis Genge has vowed to do things his own way after being tasked with filling in for the "best in the world" in Mako Vunipola.

The Leicester tyro will replace the injured Vunipola in the matchday squad for Saturday's Six Nations showdown with Wales.

And Genge insists he will need to be his own man in Cardiff.

"I'm not going to say I am going to jump into Mako's boots, because he is unreal," he said.

"He is probably the best in our position in the world, and I don't think you can replace what he has done, especially off the pitch, he has been a bit of a glue for us.

"But I will give it my best crack, and I will be myself."

Genge won the last of his six England caps as a replacement on the opening weekend of the championship against Ireland in Dublin and says he is "just trying to enjoy the ride".

The 24-year-old - nicknamed 'The Baby Rhino' - has been given the green light by the England management to be his usual confrontational self at the Principality Stadium.

"They just said be abrasive and do [with England] what you have done well for the club," he told the BBC Rugby Union Weekly podcast.

"You have to bring an attitude every time you play for England, but we are not beating the drum too early."

Genge says he did not follow the Six Nations closely growing up, citing former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson and ex-England and Manchester United midfielder Paul Scholes - "I just thought he was mint" - as his role models.

But England age-grade rugby introduced him to the unique nature of the championship, and after tasting victory at the Aviva Stadium, backing that up in Cardiff is the next challenge.

"Winning in general is what sport is about," he added.

"They are a passionate bunch the Welsh, and I am sure they are looking forward to us coming over the bridge.

"I have never been to the stadium, but I've heard it's class, so I'm looking forward to seeing it first-hand."


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