Planet Rugby

In-form Nowell tipped for England

12th December 2013 07:26

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jack nowell exeter chiefs

Solution: Jack Nowell

Exeter Chiefs boss Rob Baxter has backed talented wing Jack Nowell to solve England's selection dilemma in the Six Nations.

Stuart Lancaster's immediate options on the left wing are limited with Marland Yarde, Christian Wade and Ben Foden all injured and set to miss the start or all of the tournament.

Nowell was part of the England U20 team that won the Junior World Championship earlier this year and has looked in fine touch for Exeter this season.

"Jack's playing very well, he's certainly one of our form players and we think we're playing well," Baxter told the Exeter Express and Echo.

"There are some interesting selections that are going to have to be made very shortly for the Six Nations squad and Jack is right on form.

"He'll be at a good age when the World Cup comes about (in England in 2015). So long as he plays well, I think everything's in his favour.

"He's playing well, he looks to me like he's thriving in the big games and that's almost the most important quality. You have to perform in the big games and not just when we get on top of a team.

"He has to do it when it's tough, it's been tough the last few weeks and he's been making some good line breaks for us.

"I think he's got every chance, if he carries on the form he's in at the minute, of pushing himself forward into real contention."

Ironically given England's growing injury list out wide, Baxter actually believes an enforced rest for Nowell at the start of this season as he worked his back from a knee injury has actually benefited the 20-year-old immensely.

"It was obviously very frustrating for Jack, coming back from the high of the world cup to be told he was going to have to get some hard work done and have some time off the rugby pitch," added Baxter.

"It was tough for him, but all credit to him, he's worked hard with the medical and conditioning team. You can see how hard he's worked by the form he's in now.

"He's benefited from that time off. In the long term, it's these breaks that will determine how successful these guys are and how long their careers will be as well."

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