Six Nations: Henry Arundell could offer England boost as London Irish return nears

Six Nations: Henry Arundell could offer England boost as London Irish return nears

Henry Arundell could yet be fit in time to feature across the latter stages of England’s Six Nations campaign.

The London Irish star is back running on grass but has yet to return to full training with the Exiles. Arundell missed England’s autumn campaign with a foot injury that Irish had hoped to treat conservatively.

Complications meant Arundell had to undergo surgery at the start of December however, and the strike-running wing was omitted from Steve Borthwick’s Six Nations squad due to the injury.

New England head coach Borthwick could well draw Arundell back into the Test set-up across the Six Nations, but the Irish speedster will have to prove both fitness and form.

Irish rugby director Declan Kidney hailed Arundell’s steps forward, but insisted no one at club or country will take any chances with the final throes of his recovery.

“He’s making progress, he hasn’t joined in any training yet but he’s on the pitch running,” said Kidney. “So he is making good progress, which is a credit to him.

Comeback trail: Henry Arundell could play some part for England during the Six Nations (Getty Images)
Comeback trail: Henry Arundell could play some part for England during the Six Nations (Getty Images)

“It will be nice to have him in and around the 15-on-15 sessions. He’s very diligent, and he’s young, so if you’re diligent and you’re young sometimes you can heal up a bit faster than a fella who’s in the second half of his career.

“But he’s diligent about the way he goes about his work in fairness to him. In his case he’s been out for quite a while now, there was a hope that it would fix itself and it didn’t quite do that.

“So it needed an operation and now he’s back in. And he’s shown great patience and diligence in the way he’s gone about it, as have done the medics and the strength and conditioning coaches who are working with him.

“I think most medical teams don’t take chances, and they’ll take a look at what it is. If he’s good and up and going, all well and good.

“I’m not going to try to put words into Steve Borthwick’s mouth about when he’s ready to pick him or not. We'd have our view on that and I’d imagine it’s not that different from his view.”