The Rugby Football Union (RFU) has announced the England Women XVs contracts for the 2019/20 season.
England head coach Simon Middleton warned players in the Tyrrells Premier 15s that competition for full-time England contracts would “continue to increase” after the latest cohort of Red Roses players on professional deals was unveiled.
Amber Reed is one of five new players to be contracted on a full-time basis in only the second round of professional fifteens contracts handed out by the Rugby Football Union.
The Bristol Bears center will form part of the squad having returned to the England fold against the Barbarians in June, before winning her 50th cap in this summer’s Super Series in San Diego after missing the majority of last season through injury.
Players from Saracens, Harlequins, and Loughborough Lightning – the top three sides in the regular Premier 15s last season – make up 21 of the 28 players to be contracted.
Despite the nine-strong Harlequins contingency, which also features the club’s new recruits Lagi Tuima and Amy Cokayne, a glaring omission from Simon Middleton’s latest squad is 2017 World Cup finalist and Harlequins captain Rachael Burford, who was previously contracted full-time, while former Richmond skipper Rowena Burnfield also misses out.
Middleton added: “Last season, a number of players surfaced within the league who was showing great potential and we felt it would be wrong not to look at them. We’re really pleased with the squad of 28 and we’ll continue to adapt and call on other players at any given time. The whole league is a pool for us.”
The full-time professional deals which will run until August 2020.
England Women 2019/20 contracted players:
Zoe Aldcroft (Gloucester-Hartpury Women)
Sarah Beckett (Harlequins Women)
Sarah Bern (Bristol Bears Women)
Hannah Botterman (Saracens Women)
Shaunagh Brown (Harlequins Women)
Bryony Cleall (Saracens Women)
Poppy Cleall (Saracens Women)
Amy Cokayne (Harlequins Women/RAF)
Vickii Cornborough (Harlequins Women)
Lark Davies (Loughborough Lightning)
Vicky Fleetwood (Saracens Women)
Sarah Hunter (Loughborough Lightning)
Cath O’ Donnell (Loughborough Lightning)
Marlie Packer (Saracens Women)
Abbie Scott (Harlequins Women)
Jess Breach (Harlequins Women)
Katy Daley-Mclean (Loughborough Lightning)
Zoe Harrison (Saracens Women)
Natasha Hunt (Gloucester-Hartpury Women)
Claudia Macdonald (Wasps FC Ladies)
Sarah McKenna (Saracens Women)
Amber Reed (Bristol Bears Women)
Leanne Riley (Harlequins Women)
Emily Scarratt (Loughborough Lightning)
Emily Scott (Harlequins Women)
Kelly Smith (Gloucester-Hartpury Women)
Lydia Thompson (Worcester Warriors Women)
Lagi Tuima (Harlequins Women)