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'Quality of Eddie Jones brought his game on without question': Borthwick on what England exposure did for Leicester teenage George Martin

By Liam Heagney
(Photo by Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

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Leicester boss Steve Borthwick has been savouring the impact 19-year-old George Martin is having back at Tigers now that he has been capped by England, the teenager making his Test debut off the bench against Ireland having initially been called up by Eddie Jones following the round two injury to Jack Willis. 


Martin returned to the Leicester ranks with a bench appearance in the March 28 Gallagher Premiership win – just his seventh-ever game for his club in the league.

He then followed it with a dominant start in the Challenge Cup round of 16 success versus Connacht last Saturday, the blindside making 43 metres off a dozen carries and putting in a chart-topping 24 tackles.  

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Devin Toner on freak athlete second rows
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Devin Toner on freak athlete second rows

There was a great surprise in February when Jones named Martin on the England bench for the away game in Wales. Due to the nature of that contest, the forward was an unused replacement but he got a 17-minute run in Dublin three weeks later after a late call-up to the bench. 

Reflecting on what being involved with the England Test level set-up has done for Martin, Borthwick said: “He has been exposed to that level, been exposed to the coach, the quality of Eddie Jones has brought his game on without question. 

“You saw the way he carried at the weekend, the way he got over the gainline – that is another step forward in his game. He would talk about the work he did in England camp in that regard but it is an opportunity for me as a coach to learn what we can do better for him here. 


“We want all our players, whether you are 19, 20, 22, 24, 32, it doesn’t matter, to come and try and get better, come and try to work exceptionally hard for this team and that is what George Martin does each day and that is what I expect of the players and the coaches.”  


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