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Another COVID blow for England

NEWS: England has lost another key player, as COVID continues to hound Eddie Jones’ team.

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Veteran prop Joe Marler has tested positive for COVID and will be unavailable for selection for England for this weekend’s Test match against Australia.

“After returning a positive lateral flow test on Monday evening, he immediately went into isolation,” England said in a statement.

“A subsequent PCR test taken on Monday evening confirmed the result on Tuesday morning.

“He will now isolate for ten days, as per government guidelines.”

All of the England players and staff have undergone additional lateral flow testing – all of which returned negative results.

Additional PCR testing has also taken place and England is awaiting results.

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The squad has trained on Tuesday morning, as they prepare for the game at Twickenham Stadium on Saturday.

It was last Thursday when it first emerged that the England squad bubble had been breached.

It was that morning, on the day of the team selection announcement versus Tonga, that it was confirmed a staff member had tested positive and was in isolation.

That development resulted in additional testing taking place and it emerged on last Friday morning that skipper Owen Farrell had also tested positive.

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That finding resulted in Farrell missing last Saturday’s match versus Tonga, but he was allowed to come out of isolation and resume training to face the Wallabies after it was determined that the test result was a false positive and that the captain had not contracted the virus.

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