England training squad announced

ford and farrell

Eddie Jones has announced his latest 33-man England squad for the three-day Oxford training camp. Despite suggesting he will rest many of those involved in this summer’s British and Irish Lions tour, at this point Jones’ only high-profile omissions are James Haskell, Kyle Sinckler, George Kruis and Jonathan Joseph.

Uncapped players included in the squad are Quins’ prodigious flyhalf Marcus Smith and Bath hooker Tom Dunn.

Bath openside Sam Underhill and Sale’s Tom Curry makes the cut, but his brother Ben is omitted, while Saracen’s Nick Isiekwe and Bath’s Charlie Ewels has been preferred to Kruis at second row.

Despite his good form in Argentina, Mark Wilson is left out, and with Chris Robshaw the only recognised blindside in the group, this hints at Courtney Lawes or Maro Itoje being considered there in November.

In the backs, perhaps surprisingly, Jones’ quartet of ball playing flyhalf/centres Piers Francis, Alex Lozowski, Henry Slade and Owen Farrell are all included, and despite Joseph being left out there is no call-up for Joe Marchant. Meanwhile, Marland Yarde has earned a recall in recognition of his good early form, ahead of Semesa Rokoduguni and Denny Solomona.

‘This camp in Oxford is a really positive opportunity for the group to come back together and sharpen our focus and preparation ahead of our first match against Argentina,’ said Jones.

‘This is our most important game this year and we want the players to come away from camp having trained well with a clear plan of how we want to play and win against the Pumas.’

The Old Mutual Wealth Series will see England play Argentina on 11 November, Australia on 18 November and Samoa on 25 November.

England training squad:

Forwards

Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers), Tom Curry (Sale Sharks), Tom Dunn (Bath Rugby), Charlie Ewels (Bath Rugby), Ellis Genge (Leicester Tigers), Jamie George (Saracens), Dylan Hartley (Northampton Saints), Nathan Hughes (Wasps), Nick Isiekwe (Saracens), Maro Itoje (Saracens), Joe Launchbury (Wasps), Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints), Joe Marler (Harlequins), Chris Robshaw (Harlequins), Sam Underhill (Bath Rugby), Harry Williams (Exeter Chiefs), Billy Vunipola (Saracens), Mako Vunipola (Saracens).

Backs

Mike Brown (Harlequins), Danny Care (Harlequins), Elliot Daly (Wasps), Owen Farrell (Saracens), George Ford (Leicester Tigers), Piers Francis (Northampton Saints), Alex Lozowski (Saracens), Jonny May (Leicester Tigers), Jack Nowell (Exeter Chiefs), Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs), Marcus Smith (Harlequins), Ben Te’o (Worcester Warriors), Anthony Watson (Bath Rugby), Marland Yarde (Harlequins), Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers).

What do you think of the squad?

44 thoughts on “England training squad announced

  1. The players omitted are very experience and will no doubt be included come the autumn internationals, this is just a chance to include some of the younger, less experienced players in the international camps.
    Still can’t understand why Yarde is being selected, despite a couple of good performances. May, Nowell, Daly and Watson are the top players but imo Roko and Wade are above Yarde.

    1. He had a very good summer tour and is a very dependable, experienced fullback.
      Maybe it is time to start experimenting with Watson/Daly at 15 but Brown would 100% be on my plane to Japan in two years time

      1. I have no issue with Brown being in the wider squad. I’m sure he sets the standard in training for the younger players. However, I’d be disappointed to see him feature in every matchday squad, as he’s played a lot under EJ. Same goes for Hartley, and to a lesser extent, Robshaw and Ford.

        1. I don’t really get why Robshaw falls under that category. He’s been a glue player for ages, cleans up so much of other people’s mess. I thought we really missed him in the Six Nations.
          Equally, Ford’s form is up and down in the Prem, but he always seems to step up at intl. level.

          1. It’s not that I don’t think they’re good players, but there’s a group of guys that have played a lot under Jones, in positions where their “understudies”, if given the chance now, could be better than them by 2019. Hartley, Robshaw, Ford, Brown all have a lot of international caps. They’re known quantities at international level, and aren’t likely to improve their own game, or the depth of the squad by getting caps in the autumn.

            The same could be said for almost any established player in the squad, I just think that those mentioned are under the most threat for their places, particularly given the make-up of the squad selected.

        2. Jonny
          Agree with you. Brown irrespective of his merits as a player provides maturity and leadership in the team – something they have sorely lacked in the recent past!
          Other players might be pecking at his heels (Watson and Daly) but it doesn’t codone axing him from the squad altogether! That would be an overreaction!
          Mike Catt was retained in the squad in 2003 despite being arguably past his best (he went on to save the day against Wales in the quarter final and arguably the WC to boot). Brown provides similar things and thats before even talking about the good verging on great days he has for England.

  2. Can someone please explain why if this is just a training squad, there are still only two scrum halves? We have a total of five fly halves in there (I know some double up as centres, but they are better 10s!!) but still just Youngs and Care!!??

  3. On the players omitted I know that Kruis is injured, and Haskell has only just come back from injury but JJ & Sinckler?
    Eddie has said that Sinckler and Joseph have areas of their game to work on? I’d love to know what he thinks they are, especially Sinckler!!??

    1. Tbf I think it is just a kick up the backside. Bit like when he dropped JJ in the 6N – the ‘no one is safe attitude’.

      With Sinckler, I have heard some stuff that Jones wasn’t quite as enamoured with his end of season form as the rest of us. No idea how true that is though.

    2. Sinckler’s conduct on the Lions tour has gone against him imo. Passion is a prerequisite in elite level sport but he needs to control the ” angry young man ” cobblers he exhibited in NZ. Harry Williams looked good in Argentina and he’s a bloody big lump to bring off the bench too. I think EJ has called this correctly.

    3. Dazza
      Sinkler’s weakness (es) must include his volatility. He almost got involved in a dust up on the Lions tour though he forced the 3 points to draw the final test. Personally i’d go for him too but EJ might think he’s a liability.

      1. interesting that you say weaknesses in reference to Sinckler Alex. Do you mean his scrummaging or are their other things that concern you?

        1. Acee
          Just the mental mindset side of things. I’m in no position to criticize his scrummaging (was a back not a forward). Have heard some say he needs to improve his scrummaging.
          Would you say his scrummaging technique is up to speck at ITL level? Do you put him in the team or on the bench?

          1. I was neither a back or forward so am even less qualified to speak! I remember when Sinckler first came to prominence , one of the things that EJ noted was that he had a “streetfighter’s attitude”. I just wonder if he is now playing up to that a bit? He’s a young lad and probably quite impressionable, playing a tough sport in a position that requires a hard nosed approach but to me.he’s “forcing” the tough guy act a bit.
            From what i’ve read, he’s improved a lot scrum wise and has always had amazing mobility for a big lad. Time will tell but at present EJ appears to want certain things to alter a little.

          2. I was neither a back or forward so am even less qualified to speak! I remember when Sinckler first came to prominence , one of the things that EJ noted was that he had a “streetfighter’s attitude”. I just wonder if he is now playing up to that a bit? He’s a young lad and probably quite impressionable, playing a tough sport in a position that requires a hard nosed approach but to me.he’s “forcing” the tough guy act a bit.
            From what i’ve read, he’s improved a lot scrum wise and has always had amazing mobility for a big lad. Time will tell but at present EJ appears to want certain things to alter a little.

      2. interesting that you say weaknesses in reference to Sinckler Alex. Do you mean his scrummaging or are their other things that concern you?

  4. Looks like I was wrong about Kruis as he’s been named as a starter for Sarries tomorrow. He was out for a couple of weeks though, and injured in pre-season.

    Can’t help thinking Eddie wants to look at guys like Francis and Lozowski at 12 and 13? Still think Daly is a better option there myself.

  5. I think that EJ is just looking at 2nd and 3rd choice possibilities particularly as both Kyle and JJ are known quantities.Daly certainly merits his place in the starting XV,but although his attack play is as good as JJ his defensive play and organisation are not as good as evidenced by Wasps defensive frailties.Slade is good in defence but not as incisive in attack.Marchants
    non selection is somewhat baffling is he is the nearest to JJ in the way he plays.I think that EJ has yet to resolve whether Brown is going to remain the 1st choice full back if not then Watson is the obvious choice but Daly could play there but that would require EJ to talk nicely to Dai Young about playing time at full back.Haskells future role will obviously to act as
    mentor to Underhill.

  6. interested to know what he sees in Tom, but not in Ben :-)

    It wouldn’t surprise me if we have seen the last of James Haskell for England.

    I would imagine also that Kruis has dropped down the pecking order quite some way.

  7. Marler, Hartley, Cole; Itoje, Launchbury; Robshaw, Underhill, Vunipola
    vs
    Vunipola, George, Williams; Isiekwe, Ewels; Lawes, Curry, Hughes.

    + Genge, Dunn (Front rowers need more of a rest!)

  8. Why is Kruis out then if he’s not been injured? Esp when I keep being told by all & sundry that he’s so ‘world class’. Sensible squad with a few ‘bolters’ whom may either impress or make way when the chips are down. Don’t quite see on what basis Piers Francis is included either? Not stating that he shouldn’t nec not have been picked, but Eddie must have watched a lot of TV!

  9. I would love to see a devoto/mallinder given a go at 12 reasonably sized and have a decent skill set, and with slade outside them i believe we would have a centre partnership that would give our backline the ‘x-factor’ … thoughts ?

    1. Mallender has been playing mostly at 10 this season and in my opinion has been laying off tackles ever since he had a shoulder injury last year. Nowhere near international quality defensively at present.

  10. I know Big Billy has no like for like replacement but does anyone else think Clifford is a bit of a desperate option? Apologies in advance to ‘Quins fans!

  11. I know Big Billy has no like for like replacement but does anyone else think Clifford is a bit of a desperate option? Apologies in advance to ‘Quins fans!

    1. I was hoping to see Sam Simmonds called up to cover. Made a great start to the season with the Chiefs and is a very dynamic 8.

    2. ‘Desperate’ is not the word i’d use. EJ can certainly use it as an OPPORTUNITY to find his number 2 and 3 in the 8 position. Clifford did well in the past scoring that breakaway try against Wales in a friendly. He does have great pace though not the bulk of BV for smashing people unlike Hughes who has to be told to get his body position lower when carrying.

  12. Only the following players would make the AB test 23. Also why Sarries are awesome.

    Jamie George (Saracens),
    Maro Itoje (Saracens),
    Billy Vunipola (Saracens),
    Mako Vunipola (Saracens).
    Owen Farrell (Saracens),

    1. Relphy
      In yr dreams maybe? Why would Farrell supplant Barrett for instance? Barrett sores TRIES & is the RC’s top pts scorer. Read, e.g., can jump in the line out (can beefy Billy get off the ground?) as well as run & pass like a back & can George run like the wind, side step & pass as a centre 3/4 like Coles? I think not. Diff style, mind set required to play NZ rugger fella.

      1. Don P
        No mention of ‘supplanting’ or ‘replacing’. Relphy was making a very calm, quiet and rational point. IMHO the ABs would LOVE to have those 5 suggested players in the squad. Relphy didn’t say TEAM but SQUAD. Relax…you’re TEAM is ok and sacrosanct!

  13. Sinckler cited for eye gouging against the Saints, oh dear……………,someone needs to have a strong word with him and quickly.

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