England Saxons will kick off this season's campaign against Ireland A at Welford Road on Friday 1 February 2008 (kick-off 7.45pm).
The Saxons is the final stepping stone to full honours and fans will see some of the country’s finest emerging talents hoping to follow in the footsteps of the likes of Nick Abendanon, Nick Easter, David Strettle, Shane Geraghty, James Haskell and Mike Brown who all stepped up to senior honours after pulling on the Saxons shirt last season.
Rugby World Cup star Paul Sackey also secured his place in France on the back of his performance in the Barclays Churchill Cup final in June.
The Saxons will then play Italy A in Sicily on Saturday 9 February, before travelling to Canada to defend their Barclays Churchill Cup crown from 7-21 June 2008.
Conor O’Shea, the RFU’s director of the national academy, said: “The England Saxons set-up plays a crucial role in developing future internationals.
“After the England Under-20s, England Sevens and the Guinness Premiership, the Saxons is the final step of the development pathway which enables us to identify those players with the capability and mentality to play international rugby.
“Last year’s squad firmly re-established the Saxons within this pathway and we will be looking to continue that progress throughout this coming season.”
The England Saxons squad will be selected following the announcement on January 9 2008 of the Elite Player squads for the 2008 RBS 6 Nations.
Under the guidance of then national academy coaches Jim Mallinder and Dorian West, last year’s unbeaten England Saxons squad recorded victories over Italy A (24-5) and Ireland A (32-5) before claiming the Barclays Churchill Cup by overcoming the New Zealand Maori 17-13 at Twickenham.