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Exclusive: Another combat sport training injury in the England camp

By Alex Shaw
England train in South Africa

It appears England have not learnt their lesson from the forced retirement of Sam Jones after he injured himself in a judo session with the team in 2016, with Nick Isiekwe the latest player to be injured whilst partaking in combat sports with the national team.

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RugbyPass understands that the Saracens forward fractured his hand on Monday when the team was using wrestling as a means of preparing for the third and final Test with the Springboks this weekend.

As a result, the 20-year-old is unavailable for the Test at Newlands and a forgettable tour that saw the lock substituted in the first half of the Johannesburg Test and then sit out the fixture a week later in Bloemfontein, has been ended early.

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The injury should heal in time for Isiekwe to return to pre-season training with Saracens five weeks after the conclusion of the series with South Africa, but the club have already arranged for him to have a scan on his return to the country, to ensure that the injury is healing itself and no further action is required.

The versatile forward enjoyed a breakout campaign in the Premiership and Champions Cup last season and will be keen to consolidate his place in the Saracens squad in 2018/19, as well as attempting to push on and nail down a regular spot in the England 23 ahead of the Rugby World Cup in Japan next year.

He is not the only England player not to make it through the entire tour, with Billy Vunipola and Ellis Genge both sent home early with injuries, as well as Brad Shields dropping out of the team for the final Test, albeit with illness, rather than a physical injury.

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