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England name 29-man training squad

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Eddie Jones names his initial 29-strong England World Cup training squad

England men’s head coach Eddie Jones has announced a squad of 29 players to attend a training camp at Pennyhill Park next week (June 23-27).

Alex Dombrandt (Harlequins), Lewis Ludlam (Northampton Saints), Ruaridh McConnochie (Bath Rugby) and Val Rapava Ruskin (Gloucester Rugby) receive their first call up to an England senior men’s training squad.

Chris Robshaw and Danny Care have been left out of the squad for the five-day camp in Surrey. Flanker Robshaw, 33, was England’s 2015 World Cup captain, but he last featured for his country a year ago, and 32-year-old scrum-half Care did not gain selection during last season’s Six Nations.

Bristol-bound number eight Nathan Hughes also misses out, and whether another absentee – Northampton hooker Dylan Hartley – is called into camp at any point this summer remains to be seen.

Hartley, who led England to Six Nations titles in 2016 and 2017, has not played for six months due to a knee problem and it is understood that he is still struggling with the issue.

The week is the first of two training camps, held at Pennyhill Park and the Lensbury (June 30-July 4), before the first official Rugby World Cup training camp begins on July 7 at the Lensbury.

Players attending the camp at Pennyhill Park will not have featured in the Gallagher Premiership semi-finals or final, outside of Ludlam and Rapava Ruskin.

Both players and a small number involved in the Quilter Cup match against the Barbarians will be managed to ensure their post-season active rest periods are fulfilled in agreement with Premiership Rugby and the Rugby Players Association.

Jones said: “The first two England training camps are designed to improve individual players’ fundamentals to allow them to compete for a place in the Rugby World Cup squad.”

England’s official Rugby World Cup training squad will be announced by Jones at Japan House on Thursday, July 4.

England will play Wales (August 11) and Ireland (August 24) at Twickenham Stadium and Italy (September 6) in Newcastle as part of the Quilter Internationals as well as an away fixture against Wales (August 17) in Cardiff.

England will travel to Treviso, Italy for a heat camp from July 22 until August 2 before returning to Italy on August 28 until September 5.

The squad will also be based in Bristol for a week in July (14-18) and in August (12-16) ahead of England’s away match against Wales. 

For the two matches against Wales and Ireland at Twickenham Stadium, the squad will train at Pennyhill Park.

ENGLAND TRAINING SQUAD

Forwards – Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers), Tom Curry (Sale Sharks), Alex Dombrandt (Harlequins), Tom Dunn (Bath Rugby), Charlie Ewels (Bath Rugby), Ellis Genge (Leicester Tigers), Joe Launchbury (Wasps), Lewis Ludlam (Northampton Saints), Val Rapava Ruskin (Gloucester Rugby), Nick Schonert (Worcester Warriors), Brad Shields (Wasps), Kyle Sinckler (Harlequins), Jack Singleton (Worcester Warriors), Sam Underhill (Bath Rugby), Mark Wilson (Newcastle Falcons).

Backs – Chris Ashton (Sale Sharks), Mike Brown (Harlequins), Joe Cokanasiga (Bath Rugby), Elliot Daly (Wasps), George Ford (Leicester Tigers), Jonathan Joseph (Bath Rugby), Jonny May (Leicester Tigers), Ruaridh McConnochie (Bath Rugby), Dan Robson (Wasps), Marcus Smith (Harlequins), Ben Te’o (Worcester Warriors), Manu Tuilagi (Leicester Tigers), Anthony Watson (Bath Rugby), Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers).

*In for medical treatment – George Kruis (Saracens), Mako Vunipola (Saracens).

WATCH: Part one of the two-part RugbyPass documentary series on what the fans can expect in Japan at the World Cup

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Eddie Jones names his initial 29-strong England World Cup training squad