Will Jacks is primed to be among England’s reserve options at the World Cup after advancing his claims for a spot in a shadow side’s win over Ireland in the second one-day international.

England going to India next week ahead of the defence of their 50-over crown, which starts in less than a fortnight, means a completely separate squad was chosen for the Metro Bank series against Ireland.

Jacks did not make the cut for the World Cup but, with England yet to announce who will be on standby to travel in case injury strikes, he boosted his chances with a dazzling 94 off 88 balls on Saturday.

Asked if he feels like he has given the selectors a nudge, the 24-year-old said after England’s 48-run win at Trent Bridge: “I don’t know – that’s up to them, I’ve just got to do what I can on the pitch.

“This was a good start. It’s my first ODI game of the summer, since Bangladesh (in March), and I’m happy with how I’ve started.

“Hopefully I’ll have another opportunity (in the third and final ODI) on Tuesday and put in another good show.

“But the World Cup squad has been selected, I’m hoping to score runs in the meantime and if anything comes up then I’ll be ready.”

A changing of the guard is expected at the end of the World Cup as a number of first-choice, established players are expected to retire from the 50-over format and usher in the next generation.

Jacks gave a demonstration of what England fans could expect in the next few years as he opened for the first time in ODIs, finding some fluency with some crisp drives and punishing anything short.

He thumped four sixes but seeking his fifth to bring up a maiden international ton, Jacks instead top-edged George Dockrell to Andy Balbirnie, who settled under a skier a few feet in from the boundary.

Jacks, though, was unrepentant and signalled his unwavering commitment to the approach to batting that has served England so well in recent years.

He said: “I would have been more frustrated if I’d have tapped it around, got to 99 and then nicked off, that would have really p****d me off. I’m really happy with how I went about it.

“You’ve got to keep pushing forward – the state of the game, you can’t just knock it around and think about yourself.

“Obviously I’m going to think about those six runs and so will some other people watching but the 94 is what counts and the team win is what matters most at the end of the day.”

Sam Hain took top billing among England’s four debutants with 89 from 82 balls to lift England to 334 for eight but George Scrimshaw had mixed fortunes on his international bow as Ireland subsided to 286, with teenage leg-spinner Rehan Ahmed the pick of the attack with four for 54 in a classy 10 overs.

Scrimshaw bowled four no-balls in his first over and two in his second, plus a wide, as he leaked 35 in 11 legal deliveries but the seamer showed plenty of character to finish with figures of 8.4-0-66-3.

Jacks said: “Everyone could see he was pretty down about it. I bowled two no-balls myself. It’s a pretty bad feeling. Especially when you’re on debut, the adrenaline, the emotion.

“Everyone’s felt it in some way, just for him to be on TV, a global stage, it was a horrible feeling. He came back really well, got three wickets and bowled nicely, which he deserved.”

England had a combined 38 ODI appearances ahead of this fixture – compared to Ireland’s 720 – but they may find themselves flung together more often so this was a promising glimpse into a potential future.

After England moved 1-0 up in a three-match series that will conclude in Bristol, Jacks added: “We’ve just come together but we’ve all played together a lot and against each other numerous times, we know how each other plays, we know each other as people so it’s almost like you gel straightaway.

“We’re just guys who are really relishing playing for England and getting these opportunities while the World Cup squad is away. We’re just loving it.”

England’s next generation offered a promising glimpse of their white-ball future as Will Jacks, Sam Hain and Rehan Ahmed all starred in a 48-run win over a full-strength Ireland.

Jacks’ 94 off 88 balls contained seven fours and four sixes, contrasting with a more understated 89 off 82 deliveries from Hain, but the duo underpinned England’s 334 for eight in the second Metro Bank ODI.

Teenage leg-spinner Ahmed collected four for 54 as Ireland were all out for 286 in 46.4 overs at Trent Bridge against England’s understudies, for whom Phil Salt was the most experienced in his 15th ODI.

Ahead of this de facto series opener after a washout at Headingley earlier this week, England’s XI contained a combined 38 ODI appearances – compared with Ireland’s 720 – as the hosts made use of their deep pool of reserves, with their World Cup stars resting ahead of travelling to India next week.

Hain took top billing among the four England debutants but George Scrimshaw had fluctuating fortunes, bowling six front foot no-balls in his first two overs before rebounding with figures of 8.4-0-66-3.

Jamie Smith and Tom Hartley had more modest outings but this was still an impressive display amid an expected changing of the guard after the World Cup, while Jacks’ dazzling innings may have given the selectors a nudge about being on standby should injury befall the main group in the subcontinent.

Tipped as the successors to Jason Roy and Alex Hales, Jacks and Salt paid a fitting tribute to the pair who revolutionised opening the batting for England in the shorter formats, feasting on Ireland’s fruitless pursuit of early swing with a rash of fours to bring up the 50 stand in the sixth over.

Jacks sumptuously drove the expensive Josh Little for three successive fours but Craig Young found a better length, drawing the splice of Salt’s bat on 28 before stand-in captain Zak Crawley was lbw for a two-ball duck in his first England innings since leading their run-charts in this summer’s Ashes.

England ended the powerplay with Jacks dismissively swiping Barry McCarthy for six as he and Ben Duckett steadily rebuilt from Young’s double strike.

Put down on 44, Jacks went to fifty in style by clearing extra cover off Andy McBrine, who also went the distance off Duckett.

Fellow spinner Dockrell had more luck as Duckett paddled to short fine-leg on 48 to end a run-a-ball 102-run stand with Jacks, who slog swept the slow left-armer for his fourth six to move into the 90s.

Attempting a repeat to reach three figures in Dockrell’s next over, Jacks top-edged to Andy Balbirnie, who took a steepler a few feet in from the deep midwicket boundary.

England added just 140 in the final 20 overs but 15 of those came with Hain as the only frontline batter left after Smith holed out.

Hain, whose List A average of 57.96 is the second highest ever, had a single from his first 11 balls and was put down by a diving Harry Tector from his 12th but he gradually started to find rhythm.

Hain used his feet well to offset the bowlers’ lengths in an unobtrusive 52-ball fifty and while there were few big hits – he managed just eight fours in total – he was responsible for England going past 300. Needing 11 off the last over for his century, he miscued McCarthy to mid-off.

While England had their highest score in ODIs against Ireland, the tourists were aided by Scrimshaw’s repeated front-foot faults.

There were four no-balls in his first over in an England shirt and two, plus a wide, in his next as he leaked an eye-watering 35 having sent down just 11 legal deliveries.

When he drew Balbirnie’s outside edge with his 12th, Scrimshaw forlornly turned round to Rod Tucker after Ben Duckett snaffled the chance but the umpire gave a thumb’s up and patted him on his shoulder.

From the next ball, Paul Stirling, whose 250 List A appearances before Saturday was just 29 fewer than England’s XI combined, chopped on for 25 off 17 balls after Matthew Potts found lavish inward movement.

Ireland were up with the rate but wickets fell at regular intervals, with Ahmed into the act when the dangerous Tector was out for 39 after skewing to a backtracking Jacks.

Googlies from Ahmed snared McBrine and Mark Adair, while the youngest member of England’s XI had his fourth from his penultimate delivery as Dockrell clothed another wrong’un to Salt.

From 188 for eight, England were unable to finish proceedings quickly as Ireland’s last three batters McCarthy (41), Young (40 not out) and Little (29) all recorded ODI bests. But Scrimshaw took the final wicket as Little slammed to long-on to banish thoughts of a remarkable Ireland comeback.

Henry Arundell plundered five tries as England overcame a frantic start to dismantle World Cup newcomers Chile with a 71-0 victory that continues their march towards the quarter-finals.

Steve Borthwick’s team were rewarded for discarding their unpopular kicking game in favour of all-out attack and although the strategy resulted in some frenzied early play, upon settling they amassed 11 tries.

Arundell marked his World Cup debut by equalling the England record of five tries scored in a game as he ran riot in perfect conditions at Stade Pierre-Mauroy.

Two-try Marcus Smith shared star billing after providing an extra dimension with the ball in hand from full-back – albeit against a side positioned 22 in the global rankings.

Apart from brief flourishes Chile were totally outclassed, yet there were still enough fireworks in Smith’s first start at 15 to suggest he is a genuine option in the position for the final group game against Samoa and possibly beyond.

Owen Farrell returned from suspension to lead England for the first time at this World Cup and his 16-point haul leaves him just two short of eclipsing Jonny Wilkinson’s national record of 1,179.

England had kicked more than other team across the opening two rounds of the tournament but their intent to run against the group’s weakest opponents was evident from the start.

Smith settled quickly through some early touches but his play lacked accuracy and once the initial assault subsided, Chile showed their flair for counter attack that on one occasion swept them into the 22.

Max Malins’ high error count was proving costly but England built pressure once more and in the 21st minute they were over when Farrell’s long pass gave Arundell an easy run in.

Theo Dan finished a line-out drive and then supplied Arundell with the easiest of tries after Danny Care’s quickly taken free-kick caught Chile unaware.

After the over-exuberance displayed in the opening quarter, England were showing greater accuracy as the ball was swept left to right, aided by quick ruck speed and a desire to make things happen.

Smith launched an attack that ended in a try for Bevan Rodd and then the Harlequins fly-half claimed a solo touchdown by collecting his own grubber and outrunning Chile’s defence.

Chile were unable to secure any kind of foothold in the game with their scrum especially vulnerable and early in the second half they leaked a second line-out maul try, with Dan touching down.

Arundell completed his hat-trick after Elliot Daly’s smart kick bounced kindly for him and Smith’s comfort at full-back was clear when he caught a tricky kick with aplomb.

Having claimed three easy finishes, Arundell showed his class for his fourth which he engineered with a run down the right touchline and chip ahead.

A moment of magic from Smith teed up the Racing 92 wing’s fifth and when Smith broke from deep from inside his own half Chile must have been sick of the sight of him.

The move ended with Smith crossing and England touched down for the final time through Jack Willis.

England got their Nations League campaign off to a winning start with a 2-1 win against Scotland at the Stadium of Light.

Just over a month after their World Cup final defeat to Spain, the Lionesses earned an inaugural win in the competition after going ahead through former Black Cat Lucy Bronze.

Lauren Hemp doubled the lead before Scotland pulled one back just before the break through Kirsty Hanson and the visitors had plenty of good opportunities to level in the second half but were unable to capitalise on their chances.

Prior to kick-off both teams paid their respects to Sheffield United’s Maddy Cusack, who has died aged 27, and a period of silence was observed around the stadium.

England were on the front foot straight from kick-off and Georgia Stanway had the first real attempt of the game 10 minutes in when her header went just wide.

Lauren James then launched into an excellent mazy run across the Scottish half and threaded the ball to Rachel Daly, whose low effort was comfortably saved by Lee Gibson.

The Lionesses kept possession well but struggled to find the breakthrough as Stanway tried one of her trademark long-distance efforts from outside the box with Gibson saving.

However, the visitors took their chances where they could as Caroline Weir had a powerful effort from inside the box well saved by Mary Earps.

England thought they had broken the deadlock in the 25th minute through Daly’s flicked header from a corner, but the celebrations were quickly cut short when the goal was ruled out for offside against Chloe Kelly in the build-up.

Pouncing on a missed opportunity, Scotland were suddenly on the attack as Hanson made a great run down the left flank but Martha Thomas was unable to stab the ball home, before the Tottenham striker’s curling effort was held by Earps.

Former Sunderland defender Bronze opened the scoring for the Lionesses after a great cross from Katie Zelem picked out the right-back, who made a perfectly timed run to head home.

They doubled the lead in the 45th minute after Daly picked out Hemp on the left for the Manchester City winger to head into the top corner.

Scotland pulled one back with the last kick of the half as England failed to clear their lines in the box and Hanson was able to poke a low cross into the bottom corner.

A closely contested start to the second half saw James’ curling effort whistle over the top corner before Kelly hit a brilliant low cross into the box for Daly, who was unable to get her feet sorted in time.

Scotland threatened again as Earps was equal to Thomas’ header and the visitors looked the brighter of the two teams, but England were able to shut down the threat quickly.

Scotland had another great chance to level as Earps made a fantastic punch to clear Rachel McLauchlan’s attempted cross and Hanson smashed the rebound off the crossbar.

The visitors threatened again with six minutes to go as Lisa Evans picked out Christy Grimshaw on the edge of the box but her low effort was held by Earps.

James broke forward in added to head home after Gibson’s initial save, but the goal was ruled out for offside and Fiona Brown had the final effort of the game saved by Earps.

England are ready to step up their experiment of playing Marcus Smith at full-back in the belief he is able to perform the fundamentals of the position.

Smith will make his first start in the number 15 jersey in Saturday’s Rugby World Cup clash with Chile having made cameo appearances off the bench in the previous four Tests, providing a lively counter-attacking threat and extra playmaking option.

On each occasion his arrival acted as a catalyst for England with the ball in hand, particularly in Sunday’s 34-12 victory over Japan.

While unlikely to oust first-choice full-back Freddie Steward, Smith has the opportunity to persuade head coach Steve Borthwick that he is a viable alternative.

Borthwick appears to have found an important role for one of the most exciting talents in English rugby and is confident that his dependability under the high ball and defence match his creative skills.

“Everyone knows Marcus’ ability with ball in hand. Everyone knows he’s got a great tactical kicking game,” Borthwick said.

“Having that ball in space at 15 gives him even more time to find opportunities and find more space.

“What we are seeing from him is that his ability under the high ball is very good and he’s a really tough, brave defender.

“You don’t want your full-back to make many tackles but when they do they are usually pretty important ones. Marcus has shown himself to bring a real intensity to his defence as well.

“Having Marcus as an option there is a great strength for us. Given the way he has come on to the field and played in the position, he deserves this opportunity.”

Owen Farrell returns from suspension to lead the team at fly-half as one of 12 changes in personnel for the clash against the lowest ranked side in Pool D at Stade Pierre-Mauroy.

Borthwick has taken the opportunity to rest the bulk of his frontline stars such as stand-in skipper Courtney Lawes, full-back Freddie Steward, hooker Jamie George and centre Manu Tuilagi.

Ford is not among those rotated out, however, with England’s first-choice fly-half poised to step off the bench in the second half and be paired with Farrell in a playmaking axis for the first time since 2021.

“George Ford has been in superb form,” said Borthwick, who confirmed that Farrell remains the squad’s captain despite Lawes performing well in the role against Argentina and Japan.

“Will we see George Ford and Owen Farrell at 10 and 12? I think that could happen at some point in the game,” Borthwick said.

“They’ve been a great partnership in the past. They have been working together in training.

“They have known each other for a very, very long time and you have seen the way they can work together. There’s a great synergy between them.”

Henry Arundell makes his World Cup debut on the right wing with clear instructions from Borthwick to go hunting for the ball.

“Henry has got a special talent and ability to beat people. Henry is a very instinctive player so I talk about backing his instincts,” Borthwick said.

“If he makes a decision to go, then go. Beat people. It’s what he does so very, very well. He has added other dimensions to his game.

“His defence has really, really stepped forward, his high ball has really improved. He has been working exceptionally hard on it.

“His point of difference is his ability to beat people, so I encourage him to go and beat people.”

Owen Farrell is eager to make his mark on the Rugby World Cup after riding an emotional roller coaster watching England’s opening two matches.

Farrell has been reinstated as captain and fly-half for Saturday’s clash with Chile having served a four-game ban for the dangerous tackle made against Wales almost six weeks ago.

England’s talisman watched from the stands as Argentina were routed in defiance of Tom Curry’s early red card and eight days later a slow start against Japan made for a high-octane final quarter.

Having put himself through the wringer as spectator, Farrell will find relief in finally being thrust into the action.

“I don’t detach myself from it – I’m knackered by the end to be honest! Especially after that first one against Argentina,” Farrell said.

“I wouldn’t describe myself as a good watcher. I feel involved, I feel like I’m out there at times.

“I feel every emotion that goes with it, sometimes even more than I would if I was playing. I wouldn’t describe myself as the best in the stands!

“I wouldn’t say I am unbelievably loud, it’s just more the emotion of the game. I feel like I go through it all time.

“I’m massively excited to be back. I’ve been looking forward to getting to the World Cup and it’s been tough-ish not playing.

“It’s been brilliant to see how well the lads have been doing on the pitch and I’m desperate to be a part of it.”

George Ford has excelled at fly-half in Farrell’s absence by winning back-to-back man of the match awards, including a masterclass in game management against Argentina.

Ford drops to the bench for Saturday’s Pool D showdown but is expected to appear in the second half, reforming the playmaking axis with Farrell last seen two and a half years ago.

“George has obviously been playing fantastic. It’s exactly what you want as an England player,” Farrell said.

“I can’t speak highly enough of the way he’s been performing – and the lads as a group. It can only be good for the team with players playing well all across the park.”

With Marcus Smith starting at full-back, England could have three fly-halves on the field in the second half.

“To have two very good players around you is a very big plus for me,” Farrell said.

“The way we go about working together is pretty open and we’re constantly talking about the game and constantly trying to get on the same page about the way that we see the team.

“I’d hope that over the however many weeks that we’ve been together that we’ve developed a better relationship over the course of that.

“Marcus has come on and impacted the game at full-back. He wants the ball, he wants to make a difference, he wants to get the team on the front foot and I see it being no different on Saturday.”

Phil Salt insists he would “be there in a heartbeat” if England needed him as a World Cup reserve in India.

Jason Roy had been earmarked as the next man in should injury create a vacancy at the top of the order during the tournament, but the 33-year-old was stung by his last-minute omission from the squad and is currently on retirement watch after turning down a place in the Metro Bank Series against Ireland.

That means there is plenty to play for those who will be involved on Saturday at Trent Bridge and Tuesday in Bristol, with players on the periphery jostling to catch the selectors’ eye.

A modest total of just 14 ODI caps is still enough to make Salt the most experienced member of a second string with just 38 between them and a strong showing against the boys in green could help him inch one step closer to inking his name in as first-choice replacement.

“We haven’t had that conversation as yet. I’d imagine if that was to happen, it would be a little bit further down the line, probably after this series,” he said.

“But I know it’s an opportunity to stake a claim to a reserve spot and, obviously, if I got the call I’d be there in a heartbeat.

“We’ve got a young group here but it’s an exciting group who have done very well, whether that’s playing for their counties or in opportunities in franchise cricket or the Hundred.

“Coming into the dressing room and seeing how many proven performers we have sitting under the radar of the full-strength squad, I think it’s quite an exciting opportunity.”

Salt’s aggressive ball-striking and ability to double up as a wicketkeeper has earned him plenty of interest on the franchise circuit and he has previously turned out in domestic competitions in India, Australia, Sri Lanka, South Africa, Pakistan and the West Indies.

The vast sums available on the franchise scene is becoming a huge issue for boards to contend with as they seek to preserve the primacy of international cricket, with an avalanche of retirements expected to follow the completion of the World Cup.

At 27, and with plenty of unfulfilled ambitions at the highest level, Salt insists he is not tempted by life as a global freelancer but accepts that the appeal will only go up as the years progress.

“That’s probably quite a personal question for some people,” he said.

“Some people are at the stage of career where they are prioritising, earning money and securing their future and their family’s future. I’m a bit luckier in the position that I’m in where I’ve got time to make these calls and declare what I want to do.

“Right now, I just want to play as many games as I can for England. There’s a lot of franchise opportunities out there, but every game I can get in an England shirt, I want to take the opportunity with both hands.

“But there’s no doubt if I play as long as I want to, there will be a time where, like with every other professional cricketer, you’ve got that challenge where you’ve got to make decisions for yourself. It’s a hell of a question isn’t it?”

 Eight-time Caribbean Cup champions Trinidad and Tobago have surged inside the top 100 on the FIFA World Rankings list for the first time in almost five years following recent wins over El Salvador and Curacao.

The Soca Warriors – in the latest list published Thursday – climbed four places up to 98th from 102, a spot they held in the last rankings in July. They were last inside the FIFA top 100 at 92nd in December 2018. Based on their world position, the twin island republic remains the fourth highest rated in Caribbean Football Union (CFU).

Meanwhile, Jamaica’s Reggae Boyz jumped two places up the FIFA list to 56th and remain number in CFU ahead of Haiti at 87th world ranked and Curacao (90th). Antigua and Barbuda complete the CFU’s top five at 137th.

In the only change to the CFU’s top 10, Guyana have climbed into 10th position with a three place move to 165th in the world, as Barbados – the result of Nations League losses to Montserrat and Nicaragua – slipped out of the top 10. The fell six places on the world list from 166th to 172nd.

World champions Argentina strengthened their grip at the summit of the world rankings. The Argentines, who dethroned Brazil at the top in April, defeated Ecuador and Bolivia in their 2026 World Cup qualifiers earlier this month to improve their status.

Despite losing to Germany in a friendly last week, France retained second place, followed by Brazil (third), England (fourth) and Belgium (fifth).

Cricket West Indies (CWI) today confirmed the start times for the first ever Christmas Series played between West Indies and England in December 2023. The series will feature eight matches – three CG United One-Day Internationals (ODI) and five T20 Internationals (T20I) from 3 to 21 December as fans get the opportunity to rally at home and celebrate with the West Indies ahead of the Christmas holidays.

England arrive in Antigua to start the tour with two CG United ODIs at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium on 3 and 6 December. The 1st CG United ODI is a day game starting at 9:30am with the 2nd CG United ODI starting at 1:30pm as a day/night game. The 3rd and final CG United ODI to be played at Kensington Oval, Barbados on 9 December will also be a day/night game starting at 1:30pm.

The five-match T20I starts in Barbados with the first match played at Kensington Oval under lights starting at 6pm. The Spice Isle of Grenada then welcomes both teams for the 2nd and 3rd T20Is on 14 and 16 December with both matches starting at 1:30pm.

The tour concludes in the week before Christmas with the 4th and 5th T20Is on December 19 and 21. The Brian Lara Cricket Academy in Trinidad will be hosting a West Indies vs England men’s fixture for the first time with day/night matches starting at 4pm.

Fans can purchase tickets in advance from the Windies Tickets service presented by Mastercard at Tickets.Windiescricket.com . Fans who purchase online and in advance can choose their preferred seats and benefit from a discount compared to tickets purchased at the venue box office. 

FULL MATCH SCHEDULE (with start times)

3 December: 1st CG United ODI at Sir Vivian Richards Stadium, Antigua – 9:30am

6 December: 2nd CG United ODI at Sir Vivian Richards Stadium, Antigua – 1:30pm

9 December: 3rd CG United at Kensington Oval, Barbados – 1:30pm

12 December: 1st T20I at Kensington Oval, Barbados – 6pm

14 December: 2nd T20I at Grenada National Stadium, Grenada – 1:30pm

16 December: 3rd T20I at Grenada National Stadium, Grenada – 1:30pm

19 December: 4th T20I at Brian Lara Cricket Academy, Trinidad – 4pm

21 December: 5th T20I at Brian Lara Cricket Academy, Trinidad – 4pm

 

Marcus Smith will provide a cutting edge from full-back as England look to give their attack lift off in their World Cup clash with Chile in Lille.

Harlequins fly-half Smith starts in the number 15 jersey for the first time having appeared as a replacement in the previous four Tests, providing a lively counter-attacking threat and extra playmaking option.

On each occasion his arrival acted as a catalyst for England with the ball in hand, particularly in Sunday’s 34-12 victory over Japan.

Owen Farrell returns from suspension to lead the team at fly-half as Steve Borthwick makes 12 changes in personnel for the clash against the lowest-ranked side in Pool D at Stade Pierre-Mauroy on Saturday.

Borthwick has taken the opportunity to rest the bulk of his frontline stars such as stand-in skipper Courtney Lawes, full-back Freddie Steward, hooker Jamie George and centre Manu Tuilagi.

However, George Ford has not been given the weekend off after being picked on the bench, raising the prospect that three players whose primary position is 10 could be on the field at the same time.

At some point in the second half, Farrell and Ford are expected to reprise the playmaking axis that served England well under Eddie Jones until Ford fell out of favour.

Chile are ranked 22nd in the world and offer the scope to experiment as well as rest key personnel with tougher assignments against Samoa on October 7 and a potential quarter-final to come.

Henry Arundell and Max Malins form the wings, while Ollie Lawrence and Elliot Daly are paired together in a classic centre pairing that mixes ball-carrying clout and dynamic running skills.

Only prop Kyle Sinckler and flanker Lewis Ludlam remain from the pack that overran Japan, with hooker Theo Dan and prop Bevan Rodd present in a raw-looking front row.

“One of the many great things about the World Cup is that the tournament provides an excellent opportunity to play against teams that we rarely have a chance to see. It is for that reason that we are particularly looking forward to testing ourselves against Chile on Saturday,” Borthwick said.

“Having watched our next opponent closely, we know that we will have to prepare and play well against a committed Chile team.

“As we head to the next round, it is only right that I once again pay tribute to our excellent supporters who I know will be right behind us in Lille this weekend.”

While there are a host of new faces present, all eyes will be focused on how Smith performs when given more than a cameo role at full-back.

Although unlikely to start in the pressure-cooker matches due to his inexperience in the position, Borthwick appears to have found an important role for one of the most exciting talents in English rugby.

It is also a crucial match for Farrell, who needs minutes on the field after making his most recent appearance against Wales on August 12 when he was sent off for a dangerous tackle on Taine Basham.

Harry Kane and Jude Bellingham were both on target in the Champions League on Wednesday night.

Kane struck from the penalty spot in Bayern Munich’s 4-3 victory over Manchester United, while Bellingham prodded home a stoppage-time winner for Real Madrid against Champions League debutants Union Berlin.

Here, the PA news agency looks at the England internationals’ astonishing beginnings for their respective clubs.

How has Kane started?

After drawing a blank as a second-half substitute in Bayern’s surprise German Super Cup defeat to RB Leipzig, Kane, 30, has been virtually unstoppable.

The £100million striker netted on his maiden Bundesliga outing in a 4-0 win at Werder Bremen before bagging a brace in a 3-1 victory against Augsburg.

He scored the opener in an entertaining 2-2 draw with Bayer Leverkusen last Friday before netting from the spot against United – the club that wanted to sign him from Tottenham.

“Manchester United are crying out for a centre forward and whatever it would have cost they should have got him,” United’s former midfielder Paul Scholes told TNT Sports. “If you had the money to buy one player or three, I would have bought Harry Kane all day long.”

How has Bellingham played?

Birmingham-born Bellingham, 20, has six goals and one assist in his opening six matches since his £88.5million move from Borussia Dortmund.

He struck on his debut against Athletic Bilbao before netting a brace away at Almeria and then scoring the only goal in a 1-0 victory at Celta Vigo.

Bellingham scored a stoppage-time winner against Getafe in his first Bernabeu outing – emulating Cristiano Ronaldo by netting in his opening four LaLiga games – before delivering another late goal, this time in his first Champions League outing for Los Blancos. His mark of six is one more than the rest of the Madrid squad combined this season.

What has the reaction been?

Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti has trusted Bellingham from the get-go, preferring him to Luka Modric and Toni Kroos, who have just three league starts between them.

Speaking after Bellingham’s heroics on Wednesday night, Ancelotti said: “He’s smarter than others when attacking from the second line. He has this quality and he’s making the most of it.”

Bellingham has already won over the Real Madrid fans, who serenaded him with The Beatles’ classic ‘Hey Jude’ after his late winner against Getafe, and again on Wednesday night.

“I have goosebumps speaking about it,” said Bellingham. “You don’t understand how big this club is until you are here. I have now got that honour and I will wear it with pride.”

Kane’s brilliant start has also won him fans – not least in Bayern boss Thomas Tuchel.

“I love him,” said the former Chelsea manager. “He is a fantastic guy, fantastic player and huge personality.

“He is a clinical finisher, he controls a lot of balls, and he is so intelligent around the box. It has been a very good start from him. I am super happy.”

How does their form compare to England’s other stars?

With 11 goals and three assists between them, no other attacking member of Gareth Southgate’s England squad is performing better for their clubs this term.

Bukayo Saka, Jarrod Bowen and Callum Wilson have all netted on three occasions this season, while Raheem Sterling, James Ward-Prowse, James Maddison, Eddie Nketiah and Dominic Solanke have all scored twice.

Kane also has more England minutes since the Three Lions’ European Championship final defeat to Italy in the summer of 2021 than anyone else. Kane has played 2,016 minutes for Southgate, with Bellingham (1,540 mins) fifth behind Harry Maguire (1,927 mins) Declan Rice (1,889 mins) and Jordan Pickford (1,669 mins).

Kane and Bellingham were also on target in England’s impressive 3-1 win against Scotland last week.

What’s next?

Kane will be back in action when Bayern host Bochum in the Bundesliga on Saturday before he returns to Champions League action next month in Copenhagen. Bellingham will be bidding to help Real maintain their 100 per cent start to the season in his first Madrid derby, at Atletico, on Sunday.

They will join forces for England in a friendly with Australia at Wembley on October 13 before a European Championship qualifier against Italy at the same venue four days later.

Meanwhile, Kane also revealed he will have one eye on Tottenham’s Premier League fixture versus Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium this weekend.

“They have started the season well, so of course, Tottenham (will win),” he joked in an interview on CBS Sports with former Arsenal forward Thierry Henry – who earlier said the England captain “looked good in red and white”.

England are set to to accelerate their experiment of deploying Marcus Smith’s running skills at full-back in Saturday’s World Cup clash with Chile.

Smith has filled the position as a second-half replacement in the last four Tests, adding an extra playmaker to the backline and providing a dynamic counter-attacking threat.

The Harlequins fly-half is now poised to make his first start at 15 as Steve Borthwick takes the opportunity to rotate his squad against the weakest opposition of England’s group campaign.

Owen Farrell has completed his four-match suspension for a dangerous tackle and is ready to make his first appearance since the illegal challenge against Wales on August 12.

Farrell is set to be reinstated at fly-half and resume as captain when Borthwick names his team for the Lille showdown on Thursday evening.

Additional changes will see hooker Theo Dan start and lock David Ribbans and flanker Jack Willis make their World Cup debuts as part of a revamped 23 that will enable many of England’s frontline stars to be rested.

Willis has been competing for a spot in the ultra-competitive back row, but so far Courtney Lawes, Ben Earl, Tom Curry, Lewis Ludlam and Bill Vunipola have commanded all the game-time.

Those overlooked for selection for the victories against Argentina and Japan have been forced to complete gruelling extra training sessions, but Willis insists there has been no sense of grievance among those waiting for their opportunity.

“I don’t feel we’re a group that would let that happen, I honestly don’t. There’s no resentment towards the players that are playing,” Willis said.

“We want the team to be successful. We want to get as far as we can in this tournament, no matter whether you’re starting, on the bench, travelling reserve or not involved; you want the best for the team.”

Reflecting on his own position, the 26-year-old Toulouse flanker said: “We all know how competitive the back row is.

“I don’t think anyone of us would feel aggrieved because of the quality in the back row. I think we all bring different strengths and qualities. Depending on the opposition that can change.

“I’ve got to keep my head down and keep working hard, making sure I’m in the best shape physically I can be so that when that opportunity comes I can come out the blocks.”

Making his first World Cup appearance will be the latest episode of a rollercoaster 12 months for Willis, who was forced to leave Wasps when they entered administration and then join Toulouse.

He now has a Top 14 title winners medal to his name and is ready to realise a boyhood dream.

“If and when that chance comes you end up reflecting a little bit, thinking back to the little lad who was watching World Cup matches with his dad and his brother in the front lounge and trying to realise how special it is to be pulling on that shirt and running out at a World Cup.

“Steve Borthwick did say when the squad was named that it was in the low hundreds of how many people had pulled on a World Cup jersey for England.

“Sometimes you don’t think about that, how few people get the opportunity to do it and how special it is. Just be grateful of every moment and try and maximise it.”

Joe Root’s hopes of a final World Cup warm-up at Headingley were washed out after the first match of their Metro Bank Series against Ireland was abandoned due to concerns over the bowlers’ run-ups.

Root had requested to play at his home ground – the only member of the tournament team to feature in what was essentially a second string – after struggling for form in the recent clashes with New Zealand, but saw his hopes of a confidence-boosting innings dashed.

The match was officially abandoned at 4.50pm – more than four hours and several inspections after the scheduled start time – with rain having wrecked bowlers’ approach at the Kirkstall Lane End.

When the decision was finally made by umpires Mike Burns and Adrian Holdstock the skies had been dry for the best part of three hours, usually enough time to complete the mopping up work.

But, while the main covers successfully protected the pitch itself, groundstaff were unable to protect an area of the square that is seen as a non-negotiable in terms of player safety. Questions over how and why such an important area of the pitch was left unfit for play will surely be raised, with the quality of covers and drainage among the issues ripe for exploration.

England captain Zak Crawley, who was due to lead his country for the first time, was frustrated by the lack of action but accepted that conditions were not playable for international cricket.

“I was very disappointed we didn’t get a game on. It was just the run-up at one end, really. It wasn’t fit for play and I think that was probably right in the end,” he said.

“You’ve got guys tearing in there and you don’t want them not performing at their best, that’s not what people come to see. I think as soon as there’s any doubt, they probably made the right decision.

“It was very wet and would have churned up if we’d played on it. It wouldn’t have been fit for the bowlers. We were unlucky with the weather leading into the game and then rain all this morning as well. I’m not sure there’s anymore the groundsmen could have done, they worked very hard to try and get the game on.”

Crawley suggested a place would be held open for Root in the second match at Trent Bridge on Saturday, but the expectation is that he will now join the remaining members of the World Cup squad in returning home and enjoying some down time before a gruelling seven-week tournament.

“I think he’s going to rest now before the World Cup. That was his plan before, anyway,” said Crawley.

“I’m not certain, but if he wants to have a bat that’s his decision, of course.”

Around 10,000 paying fans were left disappointed by their day, with a further 4,000 tickets estimated to have been distributed via local clubs and schools.

Whether a more creative solution might have been available is something of a moot point given the strict playing conditions which govern international cricket, with Crawley unmoved by the idea of completing a 20-over match from just one end or using a reserve pitch at short notice.

“That’s a tough one. You don’t want to lose what the game is, changing the rules too much,” he said.

“You don’t want to make it too different from what the game usually is. I supposed there are some things we could do in the future but for now I’m not sure there’s anything they could have done.”

Joe Root’s hopes of a final World Cup warm-up were ruined by the rain as England’s first Metro Bank ODI against Ireland was abandoned without a ball bowled.

With the first-choice squad all rested ahead of next week’s departure for India, Root requested to be added to the team for the series opener at his home ground of Headingley.

He had endured four lean matches against New Zealand and was keen to find some rhythm before the tournament but persistent showers washed the match out at 4.50pm, more than four hours after the scheduled start.

The umpires were unhappy with saturated areas on the outfield, which were seen as a potential safety concern, while there were also worries about the bowlers’ run-ups.

David Ribbans accepts that his decision to join Toulon means he could be making his final appearances for England at this World Cup.

Former Northampton second-row Ribbans switches to the Top 14 club at the end of the tournament after signing a three-year contract that sees him join the exodus of English players heading across the Channel.

While there are greater riches available in the French league, they come a cost because Rugby Football Union eligibility rules state only those competing in the Gallagher Premiership are available for selection by Steve Borthwick.

It means that Saturday’s clash with Chile in Lille has the potential to become Ribbans’ ninth and final cap for England – a prospect with which he has made peace given the RFU will not soften its stance.

“When I signed for Toulon, the rules were in place and the rules will remain in place. So it was a decision I had to make,” Ribbans said.

“Unfortunately England will no longer be available so this will be the end of the road for now.

“I’m really looking forward to that challenge at Toulon, but for now I’m fully focused on England and being part of this World Cup and seeing how far we can go as a team.”

Of Borthwick’s 33-man World Cup squad, Jack Willis, Joe Marchant and Henry Arundell will also be playing for French clubs next season.

Ribbans knows that their availability for the Six Nations lies in hands of the RFU, which wants to keep England’s stars in the Premiership.

“That’s up to the RFU,” the 28-year-old said. “There would have to be some conversations had, but for now the rules are the way they are.”

Ribbans is set to start in the second row for England’s third Pool D encounter as Borthwick takes the opportunity to rest his front-line stars in the wake of emphatic victories over Argentina and Japan.

It will be Ribbans’ World Cup debut as he takes the next step on a professional career that began at Western Province in 2015.

“I never expected this a couple of years ago, so to come out of a small town called West Somerset in South Africa and to be playing for England has been amazing,” said Ribbans, who qualifies on ancestry grounds.

“My journey to the World Cup has been full of ups and downs but it’s exciting to be here. To be part of this England set-up is really special and I’ve loved every moment of it.”

While eager to make his first appearance in the tournament, Ribbans also appreciates the break from the arduous training sessions for non-playing squad members that are overseen by head of strength and conditioning Aled Walters.

“It’s been a tough two weeks on the sidelines for the fitness sessions! Aled puts us through our paces because we’ve got to keep up with the team,” he said.

“The players bring the hard yards on the Saturday so we’re busy chasing them and want to get our opportunity.

“We’re training hard and training has been good, but there’s always time for some downtime afterwards. But it will be good to get a run-out this weekend.”

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