Marcus Smith and Alex Dombrandt among Harlequins quartet called up by England

Jack Kenningham (C) has been rewarded for his good Harlequins form with a first England call-up

Credit: CAMERASPORT

Harlequins quartet Alex Dombrandt, Jack Kenningham, Joe Marchant and Marcus Smith have all been called up by England following the club’s Gallagher Premiership title triumph last weekend.

Dombrandt, Kenningham and Smith are all uncapped, taking the total of uncapped players in the squad to 23. Dombrandt and Smith’s call-ups come as no surprise while Kenningham, 21, broke into the Harlequins back row following Will Evans’ season-ending injury and played a pivotal role in winning the club’s first Premiership title since 2012.

Henry Slade has been called up from Exeter, making him the most capped player in the England squad with 38 appearances. But there is no space in the squad for the Exeter captain and fly-half Joe Simmonds, despite another impressive season for his club.

That means that Smith and Jacob Umaga of Wasps will battle it out in training this week to winning the starting fly-half shirt against the USA on Sunday.

London Irish second-row Chunya Munga has been included in the squad as an apprentice player, having trained with England since the start of the summer.

The England ‘A’ match against Scotland ‘A’ on Sunday was cancelled as a result of a number of positive Covid test results in the Scotland camp. Eleven uncapped players were set to feature in that fixture, including a new captain in Gloucester’s Lewis Ludlow.

England's squad for the summer Tests with USA and Canada

Northampton wing Ollie Sleightholme is the only injury issue for England, having suffered a concussion in training following his call-up last week. 

Sam Underhill (concussion) and Fraser Dingwall (calf) were both unavailable for last Sunday’s game, but England hoped last week they would be fit for both Test matches, with England facing the USA on Sunday and then Canada on July 10. Both Tests will be shown on Channel 4. Underhill has been retained in the latest squad, but Dingwall has missed out.

England head coach Jones said: “This is the third and final phase of our selection.  We have a squad here full of talent and potential, with 23 uncapped players who have the chance to make their England debut.

“We’ve had two good weeks working and training hard and now we look forward to seeing how far we can go.”

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