England World Cup squad – 10 Notable omissions

England World Cup Squad
BARNET, ENGLAND - MAY 25: Ben Spencer of Saracens in action during the Gallagher Premiership Rugby Semi Final match between Saracens and Gloucester at Allianz Park on May 25, 2019 in Barnet, United Kingdom. (Photo by Pete Norton/Getty Images)

Following the announcement of the England World Cup squad the debate has started on why certain players haven’t been chosen. Here are Eddie Jones’ biggest omissions from the squad. 

England World Cup Squad

Danny Cipriani

Despite being named the Premiership player of the year and gathering enough highlights to release a movie it was never to be for the Gloucester fly half.

Eddie Jones called him up to the training squad before releasing him the week before the Wales Test.

Whether it’s his off-field antics that has seen him downgraded in Jones’ eyes or his game style doesn’t suit that of the English plan, fans wanted Cipriani in but deep down never really thought he’d make it.

Ben Spencer

The Saracens scrum half has been in and out of the English camps in recent seasons. The in-form English scrum half in the Gallagher Premiership and shining in Europe during Saracens Champions Cup success.

England have selected only two scrum halves in their squad, meaning they’ll have to feature in every match. That may well hurt them considering they have only three rest days between the Tonga and USA Tests.

Taking a livewire player, who has excellent distribution and the vision to react to what’s in front of him would have been ideal.

You could still see Spencer called up if either Willi Heinz or Ben Youngs gets injured in the remaining warm-up games.

Danny Care

The 32-year old scrum half was surprisingly dropped before England’s Japan training squad assembled after being a lynch pin figure over the past four years.

It’s rare to see a player go through an entire World Cup cycle before getting dropped for the resulting squad.

Care’s experience alone would have been invaluable to England in a group that’ll provide a few testing moments.

Alex Dombrandt

Dombrandt never made the training squad despite a terrific season at The Stoop, the likely reason being the inclusion of Lewis Ludlam.

The powerful ball carrying ability fits in with England’s domination game plan that succeeded so well at Twickenham last Sunday.

An engine that’ll last and give till the final whistle, a tackle machine and decent in open play.

It’s slightly unfair that he won’t be travelling to Japan, but it would have been at the expense of Ludlam.

Harry Williams

The Exeter tighthead can count himself unlucky. A powerful set piece man with a strong ball carrying ability would have been a great fit for England.

Eddie Jones has only elected to take two tighthead’s, Dan Cole and Kyle Sinckler and in such an attritional sport, in a competition where the turnaround is just 21 days during the pool stage a third set of props is useful.

A strong game against Wales wasn’t enough to get him on the plane though and he’ll have to hope his time comes in 2023.

Mike Brown

Brown was removed from the 35-man training squad after an off-field altercation.

For years he was England’s go-to, reliable full back. He’d make you hard yards and was a strong defensive player.

He may have been a loose cannon at times, but you feel England will miss an all-round full back like Brown with Daly lacking defensively and Nowell recovering from injury.

Brad Shields

The Shields experiment has failed. The Wasps back rower has won eight caps since becoming eligible for England but hasn’t shown the form he once promised.

A flanker who loves to get about the field but that lacked enough ‘oopmh’ for Jones’ squad.

Shields may struggle to get back into the back-row post World Cup with so much talent emerging.

Ben Moon

The Exeter loosehead has had a great season. Unbreakable at the set piece, a stalwart in defence and never afraid to carry, Moon has been immense for club and country.

A good Six Nations probably would have been enough for him to get into the World Cup squad had Joe Marler not come back out of retirement.

With Mako Vunipola only partially fit they may miss Moon’s ruggedness.

Ollie Thorley

Gloucester’s playmaker. A winger who seemingly defied the laws of physics. The sheer pace and agility would have made him a potent threat for the English during the World Cup.

Being able to create something out of nothing is a prized asset for any winger, but despite possessing this Eddie Jones elected for Bath’s Ruaridh McConnochie.

Thorley can feel slightly disappointed in missing out, but England still have try scoring power and a direct threat in the Bath man.

Thorley will stand a better chance in the next World Cup squad.

Chris Robshaw

The Harlequins captain has fallen out fortune following the rise of the next generation. Sam Underhill, Tom Curry and now Lewis Ludlam fill out the back-row spots leaving no space for Robshaw.

Robshaw’s stocks fell sharply falling his captaincy loss to Dylan Hartley.

Despite bringing plenty of grit, a huge defensive effort and strong carrying ability, his dynamism isn’t quite that of a Tom Curry.

His failure to make the training squad signals the end of Robshaw’s World Cup career.

Honourable mentions

  • Zach Mercer
  • Dan Robson
  • Alex Goode
  • Don Armand
  • Sam Simmonds
  • Ben Te’o

 

“Main photo credit”

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