England's preparations for the Autumn Internationals have been dealt a blow by the news that hooker Jamie George will be sidelined for 10 weeks with injury.
George, who was replaced in the recent England training squad by uncapped George McGuigan and Jack Singleton, suffered a foot injury in Saracens' victory over Leicester, his club confirmed, adding that the 31-year-old will return in early December. Jack Walker, the Harlequins hooker, also withdrew from the squad through injury.
Luke Cowan-Dickie is the third hooker – and favourite for the starting jersey – in Eddie Jones' squad, which assembled in Richmond for a mini training camp ahead of the November internationals at Twickenham against Argentina, Japan, New Zealand and South Africa on consecutive weekends.
Speaking from their Richmond camp, forwards coach Richard Cockerill left the door open for some of the elder statesmen of English rugby to make a surprise return to the international fold. Dan Cole, the England tighthead whose last cap came in the 2019 World Cup final, has been in sensational form this season for Leicester, for example.
"I know Dan very well," Cockerill said. "I coached him from a very young age. We know what he can do. We know where he is. If we ever needed that person, we’d know where to go. He’s playing fantastically well for his club and those guys that are a fair bit younger than him are in the squad and working hard now and developing, so I think that is a really good balance for us.
"We have young guys coming through and developing and playing, knowing that if there was an emergency or selection was different, we know where Dan is to come in and play. Nobody is out of the picture. If he plays really well and the opportunity comes, we wouldn’t write any player off regardless of their age or where they’re at."
Who are England playing in the 2022 Autumn Internationals?
England are playing four matches in November, against Argentina, Japan, New Zealand and South Africa.
When are England's 2022 Autumn International matches?
England v Argentina, Sunday Nov 2, 2.15pm GMT, Twickenham
England v Japan, Saturday Nov 12, 3.15 GMT, Twickenham
England v New Zealand, Saturday Nov 19, 5.30pm GMT, Twickenham
England v South Africa, Saturday Nov 26, 5.30pm GMT, Twickenham
How do I watch England's Autumn International 2022 matches?
All four of England's Autumn Internationals will be broadcast live on the online streaming platform Amazon Prime. You can join Amazon Prime for £8.99 per month, with a cut rate of £4.99 available for students.
How do I buy tickets to the matches?
Tickets are not currently available for the matches against New Zealand or South Africa but limited tickets are still on sale for both the Argentina and Japan matches. Visit englandrugby.com for more information.
Who is in England's squad?
Jones' final squad announcement for the Autumn Internationals is expected later in October.
Who are England's key players?
In the forwards, expect captain Courtney Lawes, Maro Itoje and Tom Curry to have a huge influence. Uncapped Saracens second row Hugh Tizard has received his first call-up and has been touted as a future star for his country.
In the backs, Eddie Jones will likely lean on the experience of Owen Farrell, along with veteran scrum-half Ben Youngs. Manu Tuilagi is also likely to be involved provided he maintains his fitness, while the likes of Marcus Smith, Henry Arundell and Will Joseph will offer exciting cutting edge.
What happened last year?
England were involved in three Autumn Internationals last year. In their first match, they beat Tonga 69-3 at Twickenham before putting in a superb display to beat Australia 32-15.
In the final match, England raced into an early lead against South African before being pegged back by the visitors. The home side needed a last-minute penalty from Marcus Smith to clinch a 27-26 victory.
This article is regularly updated with the latest information.