Jack Nowell rules himself out of England’s World Cup plans

By Sports Desk May 23, 2023

Jack Nowell has ruled himself out of England’s plans ahead of the World Cup in France later this year.

Nowell, who is currently recovering from a knee injury, looks set to join European champions La Rochelle ahead of next season.

And 30-year-old Nowell has decided to take himself out of the selection frame, effectively signalling an end to his 46-cap England career.

England’s current selection policy dictates that players plying their trade overseas are not considered for Test duty.

“I am not doing the World Cup, no World Cup. I am just going to chill and get my knee sorted,” Nowell told the RugbyPass Offload podcast.

“It was a hard decision not to put myself in for selection for the World Cup, but I thought it was probably one that I had to make for myself and my family as well.

“We are going to make the most of being back home in Cornwall, probably spend the next few weeks there and we have got our testimonial tournament at Sandy Park on June 3.

“I was in contact with (England head coach Steve Borthwick) ‘Borthers’ and he let me know I wasn’t going to be involved in the Six Nations, which was completely fair enough. New coach, new ideas.

“I was happy with that, it was my last year at the club (Exeter), so I got to really focus on doing my best for the club and try and focus on getting us into the big games at the end of the season.

“When you do sign abroad, you have an option of signing pre-World Cup or post-World Cup. For me, I made the decision that it was probably best for me and my family to sign a pre-World Cup contract.”

Borthwick turned to the likes of Anthony Watson, Ollie Hassell-Collins and Henry Arundell during the Six Nations, with wing a hugely-competitive area.

Nowell added: “I am sure it would be a bit different if I was talking to Steve all the time and I have spoken to him since then to tell him my decision.

“I think I was in his World Cup plans, especially for the first get-togethers as a big squad, but I decided not to do that and make sure my family get settled in France and make sure I get settled in France.

“As much as I would like to have done this one (World Cup) and given it a good crack, sometimes you have got to read between the lines and understand you are probably not in the coach’s favour.

“Don’t get me wrong, I would love to have fought for my position and got myself back into playing, but family comes first for me.”

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