Saturday , February 4 2023

Tuilagi returns to England, says Youngs


By Duncan Bech

Manu Tuilagi, the impending comeback of England over time to face New Zealand at Twickenham, had a calming effect on those who did not succeed Eddie Jones, according to Ben Youngs.

Tuilagi had to make his first international appearance in two years in the 12-11 victory over South Africa, which opened the Quilter International, just to withdraw from the bank due to a minor strain.

But the center of Leicester, whose career was destroyed by a series of bust, knee and hamstring injuries, has been fully prepared this week and is included in a team of 25 people to continue preparing for the fall .

Four years ago, he scattered All Blacks, with a show in full swing, in a famous victory at Twickenham and Youngs – his colleague Tigers – is eager to make his mark again.

"I was eviscerated when he pulled out, but he was a little niggle. If it had happened on Monday, he probably would have been good, but with someone like him, you do not have to risk," Youngs said.

"It's great to see him running during the training. I'm really gonna be able to go back there.

We know what a Manu world class operator is. The boys are restored to know he is there.

Tom Curry was excluded from the rest of the fall series by ankle injury sustained against South Africa, so his place among the 25 in controversy for All Blacks goes to Sam Underhill.

Jones calls his team tomorrow. England, otherwise, received a clean health note before New Zealand's Saturday visit – the first time rivals met in four years.

Courtney Lawes is available, overcoming a back problem that forced him to miss the same match, so Elliot Stooke is among the 25 who will remain at Surrey's training base.

Some England players may wonder how well they are known for their kiwi opponents, but Youngs is too aware of the damage that world champions can cause.

Chris Ashton revealed that it was clear when he spoke with All Black Malakai Fekitoa during his season in Toulon that "he literally did not know what the Premiership was. He had no idea." But England is well prepared for what to expect.

"One thing about All Blacks is that you have to enroll the trials. We know that," Youngs said.

"I do not like the word" contains "because it assumes we will go out there and see what they have."

Meanwhile, Brad Shields came "very close" to the New Zealand selection before opting to represent England, according to All Blacks assistant coach Ian Foster.

Shields volcanoes will face the country where England is born this weekend Shields was born in Masterton for English parents and played for hurricanes before moving to Wasps.

Foster said that at the age of 27 he knew how close he was to the All Blacks honors when he headed to the northern hemisphere. "I think the obvious answer, which is the only answer, is that the selectors did not choose it," Foster said.

"It's like anything – when you select a national team, there are plenty of good players who fail quite well.

He knew he was knocking at the door.

"I will not give you any reason why we have not chosen him. But what we know is that he is a quality person, he did a great job on the field in hurricanes and he was very conversing with us.

Fly-half Beauden Barrett continues to set new standards in the ball game, but sometimes he tried to hit the goal. Foster has advocated a firm defense of Barrett's abilities, though he insists that 27-year-olds can still help New Zealand become the best shot in the world.

"I do not see too many articles saying that Beauden has hit 11 out of 12 in the last three tests," Foster said. "If you hit two out of six, it's like a national calamity, but we're pretty happy.

"We want to be the best kickers in the world, so we're working hard to do that.

"And if we look at our general numbers, we are actually pretty good."

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