Joe Marler has made himself unavailable for England duties this summer, a RFU press release confirmed this evening. The Harlequins prop has ruled himself out of selection for both the test match against Wales, and the ensuing tour to Australia.
The press release confirmed that Marler would have been selected in the tour squad, but has instead taken the opportunity to rest.
Commenting on the decision, England head coach Eddie Jones, said:
“Joe played brilliantly during the RBS 6 Nations and he will be a big loss in Australia.
“Joe knows better than anyone what it takes to be part of a winning international team and he obviously doesn’t feel like he’s quite there at the moment. We fully support Joe’s difficult decision and admire his honesty.
“He’s a young man with a very bright future. There’s no doubt in my mind he’ll use this time wisely and come back feeling refreshed and ready to be part of England again.”
“It has been a very enjoyable but sometimes difficult season,” said Marler who has been capped 42 times for England.
“After speaking to Eddie in Brighton I have decided that the best thing for me is to take a rest and not go to Australia. Whenever you play for England you have to be 100% and unfortunately I’m not in that place at the moment. It’s not a decision I’ve come to lightly, but I feel I would be letting my teammates and my country down if I were to tour.
“I think a short rest will really help me recharge my batteries so I can start next season with the energy and focus that’s needed to perform at the highest level.
“I wish my team mates the very best in Australia in what is a hugely exciting and challenging series for England.”