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Huge blow for England as Alex Mitchell ruled out versus Scotland

By Liam Heagney
England's Alex Mitchell (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

First-choice England scrum-half Alex Mitchell has been ruled out of next Saturday’s round three Guinness Six Nations game away to Scotland.


Head coach Steve Borthwick named his squad of 36 on Sunday evening for the trip to Edinburgh and there were two changes from the group that assembled last Wednesday for the mini-camp that culminated in Friday’s open training session in front of 10,00 fans at Twickenham.

Mitchell, who was originally an emergency Rugby World Cup call-up in August following the long-term injury to Jack van Poortvliet, has started in eight of England’s last 10 matches.

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He dominated the No9 jersey at France 2023, making five starts in the seven-game campaign, and has also been Borthwick’s starter in the opening rounds of the current championship away to Italy and at home to Wales.

However, despite being pictured training last Friday at Twickenham, he won’t be available for next weekend’s trip to BT Murrayfield due to a knee injury that will require further investigation in the coming days to ascertain the length of rehabilitation required.

Six Nations
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His place in the squad has been taken by Harry Randall, who last Thursday was named in the squad of 27 for the February 25 England A game versus Portugal at Leicester.

Randall, who will now contest the scrum-half berth with Danny Care and Ben Spencer, is one of two changes to the Six Nations squad as Ollie Lawrence, who spent last week with England rehabilitating a hip injury, has been promoted into the official squad with Will Muir, his uncapped Bath teammate, dropping out.


These latest changes mean that Borthwick heads into the Scotland match week with a squad of 36 that has five changes from the squad that assembled for the round two win over Wales.

Luke Cowan-Dickie and George Martin were last week brought into the forwards, the pair taking the spots of Jamie Blamire and Tom Pearson who were named in the A team squad. Midfielder Manu Tuilagi was also recalled last week, taking over from Oscar Beard.

The rehabilitating Lawrence and Marcus Smith were listed as unofficial fallow week squad members and while Lawrence has now been included in Borthwick’s squad to face Scotland, Smith will maintain his rehabilitation role.

The omitted Muir and Beard are now expected to feature in the England A team squad which will be updated on Tuesday when George Skivington’s group assemble at Loughborough University.


England squad (vs Scotland, Saturday)
Forwards (20):
Ollie Chessum (Leicester Tigers)
Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers)
Alex Coles (Northampton Saints)
Luke Cowan-Dickie (Sale Sharks)
Chandler Cunningham-South (Harlequins)
Ben Curry (Sale Sharks)
Theo Dan (Saracens)
Alex Dombrandt (Harlequins)
Ben Earl (Saracens)
Charlie Ewels (Bath Rugby)
Ellis Genge (Bristol Bears)
Jamie George (Saracens)
Joe Heyes (Leicester Tigers)
Maro Itoje (Saracens)
Joe Marler (Harlequins)
George Martin (Leicester Tigers)
Beno Obano (Bath Rugby)
Ethan Roots (Exeter Chiefs)
Will Stuart (Bath Rugby)
Sam Underhill (Bath Rugby)

Backs (16):
Danny Care (Harlequins)
Elliot Daly (Saracens)
Fraser Dingwall (Northampton Saints)
Immanuel Feyi-Waboso (Exeter Chiefs)
George Ford (Sale Sharks)
Tommy Freeman (Northampton Saints)
George Furbank (Northampton Saints)
Ollie Lawrence (Bath Rugby)
Max Ojomoh (Bath Rugby)
Harry Randall (Bristol Bears)
Tom Roebuck (Sale Sharks)
Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs)
Fin Smith (Northampton Saints)
Ben Spencer (Bath Rugby)
Freddie Steward (Leicester Tigers)
Manu Tuilagi (Sale Sharks)

  • Marcus Smith (Harlequins) will join the squad to continue his rehabilitation from injury.



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Poorfour 5 hours ago
The AI advantage: How the next two Rugby World Cups will be won

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