Sam Underhill could return for England’s next World Cup warm-up game against Ireland next weekend.
The Bath flanker, who grew up in Gloucester, missed both games against Wales with a toe injury but trained on Saturday and “should be in the mix” according to head coach Eddie Jones, along with fellow back-rowers Tom Curry and Mark Wilson.
Former University of Gloucestershire student Ruaridh McConnochie has been withdrawn from the side due to injuries in the last two weeks, with Jones calling his muscle strain a “seven to 10 day injury” which could put his involvement against Ireland at risk.
The Bath wing is the only uncapped player in the World Cup squad but Jones says he would have no concerns if he was going to miss yet another warm-up game before the tournament in Japan, adding that he has “great confidence in the lad.”
Jones has picked young and inexperienced sides for both games against Wales with England winning at Twickenham before being beaten 13-6 at the Principality Stadium on Saturday.
However, some of the big guns could return to the starting lineup against Ireland.
“We’ll definitely have a different selection strategy and we’ll have a difference to the way we play,” said Jones.
Despite the result, he was keen to put a positive spin on the performance against Wales in Cardiff.
“All the noise this week was how Wales were going to come out and tonk us,” he said.
“They had a top team, we had a young team, they were going to do a job on us. So I’m pleased our team have been able to ignore that to a large extent and play with a lot of ferocity and commitment.
“I’m so pleased with our performance because it’s an outstanding game for us. You’ve got to be able to stay in the game and we stayed in the game and we gave our more experienced guys some game time at the end. That’s what the game’s about.”
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