England sweating on fitness of Kyle Sinckler ahead of Wales clash

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Kyle Sinckler’s availability for England’s Guinness Six Nations clash with Wales has been thrown into doubt by a facial injury.

Sinckler has been omitted from a 26-man squad that will take part in a three-day training camp in London this week, although he will be present to receive treatment from England’s medics.

The Bristol prop departed as a blood replacement in the 50th minute of Saturday’s 31-14 victory over Italy and was unable to return, resulting in Dan Cole finishing the game at tighthead.

Sinckler impressed against Scotland and Italy, playing his part in England’s set-piece revival and showing high work-rate on both sides of the ball, and it will be hoped he can recover in time for the trip to Cardiff on Saturday week.

Steve Borthwick can at least call on Will Stuart as his replacement, although he will have concerns over the Bath front row’s lack of game time despite including him among the 26.

Stuart has not played since dislocating his elbow in the climax to the autumn against South Africa and his most recent club outing was against Saracens in October, upon which he faced another spell out because of knee damage.

Will Stuart has not played since suffering an elbow injury against South Africa
Will Stuart has not played since suffering an elbow injury against South Africa (Ben Whitley/PA)

Courtney Lawes will also receive treatment in the camp that fills the first break week in the hope of facing Wales having struggled with a calf injury that has prevented him from taking part in the Six Nations to date.

Sale flanker Ben Curry is present despite being dropped against Italy, but there is no place for his twin brother Tom who is nearing recovery from a hamstring issue.

In a sign of Manu Tuilagi’s slide down the pecking order he has been left out of the 26 altogether with Henry Slade, Ollie Lawrence and Joe Marchant the specialist centres named by Borthwick.

England U20s players will join their senior counterparts to boost the numbers for training sessions.

England training squad:

Forwards: O Chessum (Leicester Tigers), D Cole (Leicester Tigers), B Curry (Sale Sharks), A Dombrandt (Harlequins), B Earl (Saracens), E Genge (Bristol Bears), J George (Saracens), N Isiekwe (Saracens), M Itoje (Saracens), L Ludlam (Northampton Saints), W Stuart (Bath Rugby), M Vunipola (Saracens), J Walker (Harlequins), J Willis (Toulouse).

Backs: H Arundell (London Irish), O Farrell (Saracens), O Hassell-Collins (London Irish), O Lawrence (Bath Rugby), M Malins (Saracens), J Marchant (Harlequins), A Mitchell (Northampton Saints), H Slade (Exeter Chiefs), M Smith (Harlequins), F Steward (Leicester Tigers), J van Poortvliet (Leicester Tigers), A Watson (Leicester Tigers).

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