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Hunter 'withdrawn' from England squad for Six Nations decider

By Kim Ekin
(Photo by Catherine Ivill/The RFU Collection via Getty Images)

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England have suffered a blow in the build-up to their TikTok Women’s Six Nations clash with France after captain Sarah Hunter was ruled out of Saturday’s decider in Bayonne. The 36-year-old number eight suffered a rib injury in the 69-0 mauling of Ireland in round four and will not recover in time to face the Red Roses’ closest rivals, with Poppy Cleall set to fill the void in the back row.

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Hunter won her 134th cap on Sunday and her experience means she will still travel to France to assist with preparations. England and France have enjoyed immaculate progress to their Grand Slam decider after each amassing four successive bonus-point victories.

An RFU statement on Tuesday read: “Sarah Hunter has been withdrawn from the England TikTok Women’s Six Nations squad. The Red Roses captain suffered a rib injury in Sunday’s victory over Ireland at Welford Road and will sit out of Saturday’s final round fixture in France.

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“Hunter will join the group in France later this week to support preparations in an off-field role.”

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