Fresh backline blow for England
INJURY UPDATE: England have suffered a fresh injury blow ahead of this weekend’s Six Nations opener against Scotland after Dan Kelly was ruled out with a thigh injury.
Leicester Tigers’ Kelly was in contention to start at inside centre for the Calcutta Cup clash at Twickenham on Saturday.
But the 21-year-old, who earned his only England cap against Canada last year, has been forced to withdraw from Steve Borthwick’s squad and will be replaced by his Leicester Tigers colleague Guy Porter.
Kelly is the latest player to be sidelined for Borthwick’s first match in charge after taking over from the sacked Eddie Jones.
Another centre Henry Slade will not feature after he sustained a hip injury in Exeter Chiefs’ game against Castres last weekend, while vice-captain Courtney Lawes, a forward, is absent with a calf problem.
Kelly’s injury leaves Owen Farrell, Ollie Lawrence, Joe Marchant, Manu Tuilagi and Porter as the other centre options for Borthwick.
Hooker Jamie George is included in the squad after he was initially withdrawn from the group with concussion.
Back Anthony Watson, who has impressed for Leicester Tigers this season, has also been added to the 36-man squad.
Meanwhile, Jonny Gray has joined up with the Scotland squad ahead of their trip to Twickenham.
The Exeter Chiefs’ lock was not at the training camp in Edinburgh last week because of what the Scottish Rugby Union described as “an ongoing medical issue”.
Edinburgh’s Jamie Hodgson was called into the squad on a temporary basis.
However, Gray started for Exeter Chiefs and scored a try in their victory over Gloucester.