England suffer massive World Cup blow
SQUAD UPDATE: England have been forced to bring in an uncapped flank following Brad Shield’s injury.
The former Hurricanes loose forward Shields returned home from the England camp in Italy after picking up a foot ligament injury.
Shields, who will undergo further assessment in England to understand the extent of the injury, has been replaced with Harlequins’ Alex Dombrandt.
The news is certainly a blow for head coach Eddie Jones who named a 38-strong training squad on Monday prior to flying out that day to Treviso for a camp that will last until August 2.
Bath’s Sam Underhill and Anthony Watson travelled with the squad after spending last week doing specialised strength and conditioning work separately off-site while Joe Marchant (Harlequins) joined the group for the first time.
Meanwhile, Danny Cipriani’s World Cup hopes suffered blow after being left out of this latest squad.
The Gloucester flyhalf was originally selected in England’s pre-World Cup training squad and also spent last week doing specialised strength and conditioning training.
England will play Wales (August 11) and Ireland (August 24) at Twickenham Stadium and Italy (September 6) in Newcastle as part of the warm-ups as well as an away fixture against Wales (August 17) in Cardiff.
England will begin their Rugby World Cup campaign in Japan against Tonga in Sapporo before playing USA Rugby in Kobe (September 26), Argentina in Tokyo (October 5) and France in Yokohama (October 12).
Forwards: Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers), Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter Chiefs), Tom Curry (Sale Sharks), Alex Dombrandt (Harlequins), Charlie Ewels (Bath), Ellis Genge (Leicester Tigers), Jamie George (Saracens), Maro Itoje (Saracens), George Kruis (Saracens), Joe Launchbury (Wasps), Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints), Lewis Ludlam (Northampton Saints), Joe Marler (Harlequins), Kyle Sinckler (Harlequins), Jack Singleton (Saracens), Sam Underhill (Bath), Billy Vunipola (Saracens), Mako Vunipola (Saracens), Harry Williams (Exeter Chiefs), Mark Wilson (Newcastle Falcons/Sale Sharks).
Backs: Mike Brown (Harlequins), Joe Cokanasiga (Bath), Elliot Daly (Saracens), Owen Farrell (Saracens), George Ford (Leicester Tigers), Piers Francis (Northampton Saints), Willi Heinz (Gloucester), Jonathan Joseph (Bath), Joe Marchant (Harlequins), Jonny May (Leicester Tigers), Ruaridh McConnochie (Bath), Jack Nowell (Exeter Chiefs), Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs), Ben Spencer (Saracens), Ben Te’o (unattached), Manu Tuilagi (Leicester Tigers), Anthony Watson (Bath), Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers).