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Anthony Watson's take on 'explosive' Immanuel Feyi-Waboso cameo

By Josh Raisey
England player Immanuel Feyi-Waboso runs in to score the second England try during the Guinness Six Nations 2024 match between Scotland and England at BT Murrayfield Stadium on February 24, 2024 in Edinburgh, Scotland. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

A combined total of three minutes of action over the course of the opening two rounds of Guinness Six Nations action is not ideal for any player wishing to showcase their talents.

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After coming on for his England debut against Italy in round one, Immanuel Feyi-Waboso was an unused substitute a week later against Wales at Twickenham, as Steve Borthwick’s side sought to cling on to their slender leads on both occasions.

But with England’s attack flatlining in Edinburgh on Saturday to a point where it had ground to a state of inertia, the Exeter Chiefs wing was granted more time to try and resuscitate his side – a whole 20 minutes – and the 21-year-old delivered.

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As far as cameos go to stake a claim to start for England, Feyi-Waboso’s could not have gone any better, as he carved through Scotland’s defence for a try within minutes of coming on. Combined with a series of punchy carries at Murrayfield, it was a cameo that England’s most capped player Ben Youngs feels put the winger “in the conversation” to start against Ireland in round four of the Championship.

The scrum-half discussed Feyi-Waboso’s performance on his For the Love of Rugby podcast, saying he was “really impressed” with him.

Match Summary

3
Penalty Goals
2
3
Tries
2
3
Conversions
1
0
Drop Goals
1
86
Carries
102
4
Line Breaks
4
15
Turnovers Lost
22
6
Turnovers Won
8

Youngs was joined by Anthony Watson on the podcast, who has been in the England camp for rehabilitation this Six Nations. The winger said how his teammate “looked really good”, particularly as it is hard to impose yourself on a game from the wing.

“You’ll never forget your first try,” the Leicester Tigers winger said.

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“Manny will be loving it. It’s obviously gutting that you’re part of a team that loses on the day, but to come out there as a winger – what did he get, 15, 20 minutes? – and score. Even the confidence to call for the ball when you’ve got two caps and you’re coming on off the bench in a losing team, I think shows the type of bloke that he is. Fair play to him.”

Youngs added: “I liked it. Because [Cameron] Redpath was defending around the ruck, and Ben Spencer has a great little show and go around the ruck. He’ll know that playing together at Bath. So he can’t leave it, and [Feyi-Waboso] comes around the corner steaming onto it and he’s a powerful lad. He picks his hole, he’s committed to it, and a lovely little lay-up by Benny Spencer.

“I was really impressed with him. He’s probably put his hand up to, certainly in the conversation, because you look at him and you’re thinking ‘he looked great’. It will be interesting to see what they do against Ireland, but I was really impressed with him. I thought he had a great impact, and that’s all you can do as a finisher. And as a winger it’s hard.”

Watson responded: “It’s really hard, because you don’t want to force yourself into the game. I think that’s where, as a winger particularly, you start forcing it, getting your hands on the ball. And that’s where errors start happening and it looks clunky. So to come on and seamlessly fit in and also score a try and look explosive I think is testament to him. Ball in hand he looked strong, didn’t get caught behind the gainline once, always making yards. He looked really good.”

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