England skipper Dylan Hartley has emerged as an injury doubt for Saturday’s pivotal Six Nations clash with France in Paris after suffering tightness in his calf.
Hartley, who has captained England throughout Eddie Jones’s reign as head coach, is set to be monitored prior to Thursday’s team announcement.
If the 31-year-old fails to recover then Jamie George is primed to start in his place – Exeter hooker Luke Cowan-Dickie has been called into the squad as cover – and inside centre Owen Farrell assume captaincy responsibilities.
England’s injury problems are not confined to Hartley. Wing Jack Nowell has been ruled out of the remainder of the championship and flanker Sam Underhill is unavailable for the showdown with France. Prop Harry Williams is also a doubt for the Les Bleus tussle.
Nowell rolled an ankle in training, while Underhill, who has featured off the bench in all three of England’s Six Nations matches so far, has a toe injury and Williams a neck problem.