One of England’s Leading Stars Has Been Ruled Out Of Ireland Game


Joe Launchbury was named in Eddie Jones’ 23-man matchday squad yesterday, but has today been replaced in the group by Northampton’s Courtney Lawes following a hamstring injury.

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Launchbury is one of England’s star men and has emerged as a real leader despite being only 24. The lock certainly a huge loss to Eddie Jone’s side but the England coach may use this opportunity to start promising young Saracens lock Maro Otoje, who is widely touted to be a future world class talent.

Forwards coach Steve Borthwick was asked about the situation but refused to give anything away.

“I think it’s a competitive position right now, and that’s a good thing,” said Borthwick.

We’ve got a mixture of players there with different levels of experience. That’s a really good thing for the squad to make that a competitive area. With that it spurs the intensity of training.”

“(Ireland) do have some injuries, but they also have good depth. Devin Toner is very experienced, and a very good operator at this level, so he’s a threat for us.

“So we need to perform really well, it doesn’t matter who they select, they will have a really good pack.

“We’ve got to really concentrate hard on our preparation, which we have done, because we know we have to play well this week.”