EXCLUSIVE: Owen Farrell and Jamie George are ruled out until the New Year to leave England sweating on pair’s availability for Six Nations, with both suffering injuries in bruising encounter against Australia
- Owen Farrell and Jamie George have been ruled out of action until the New Year
- The Saracens pair both picked up injuries in England’s victory over Australia
- Both now face a race to regain fitness ahead of next year’s Six Nations campaign
England captain Owen Farrell and hooker Jamie George face a race to be fit and ready for the start of the Six Nations, after being ruled out until the New Year.
The Saracens pair both went off injured during the national team’s 32-15 win over Australia at Twickenham last weekend and it was already clear that they would be unavailable to take on South Africa on Saturday.
Both men have been sent for specialist assessments and Sportsmail understands that they are expected to be sidelined for at least two months each.
Owen Farrell has been ruled out until 2022 after picking up an injury against Australia
Precise details are still to be confirmed, but the indications are that Farrell requires an operation on the injury he sustained to his left ankle. In the case of George, surgery is not thought to be needed, but he is likely to require a prolonged period of rest and recuperation.
This is bad news for Saracens, who would have hoped to have their captain and senior forward back on club duty and firing on all cylinders during the busy period of Premiership and European fixtures through December and January. George in particular was in exceptional club form prior to joining up with the Red Rose squad for the autumn campaign.
There is less of an immediate impact for England, but head coach Eddie Jones will hope that his skipper and a revitalised fulcrum of the pack will recover in time for the Six Nations – and also have sufficient match practice to avoid recent history repeating itself.
Jamie George will also have to wait until next year to return to the field after being ruled out
Last season, the relegated Saracens contingent went into the annual championship short of game-time and, in hindsight, there was recognition that this contributed to England’s grim campaign and fifth-place finish.
Next year, the opening fixture is against Scotland at Murrayfield on February 5 and after losing at home against the same opponents in the 2021 tournament, Jones will want to go to Edinburgh with his strongest side.
If George is fit and in the groove again, he will challenge Luke Cowan-Dickie for the No 2 shirt, while Jones is likely to want Farrell back as captain, to resume the new 10-12 alliance with Marcus Smith.
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