Mike Brown has been left out of an England match-day squad by Eddie Jones for the first time when fit to play – while Ben Morgan and Michael Rhodes are also among a contingent of players released back to their clubs on Wednesday.
Harlequins full-back Brown has been a stalwart of the Jones era. The 33-year-old with 72 caps has only missed two Tests during the Australian head coach’s regime. He was rested from the victory over Fiji in 2016 and concussion kept him out of the autumn win against Australia a year ago.
This time, his omission is seemingly on form grounds and suggests a changing of the guard in the back line.
Mike Brown has been left out of an match-day squad by Eddie Jones for the first time when fit
The 33-year-old Harlequins full-back has been a stalwart of Jones’s tenure with England
Brown has been the dominant figure in the No 15 shirt for England for several years
Brown has been the dominant figure at full-back for England for several years, but Elliot Daly took over that position during the summer tour of South Africa and the Wasps player is on course to retain the No 15 shirt against the Springboks at Twickenham on Saturday.
As expected, Northampton lock Courtney Lawes has been deemed unavailable for the first of four Quilter Tests next month, but he will stay with the squad here in Portugal to continue his rehab work, in a bid to shake off a back problem.