Jess hails impact on Chiefs' youngsters of Nowell's ongoing England success
Exeter Chiefs wing Jack Nowell is part of an unchanged England side for tomorrow’s pivotal Six Nations clash with Scotland at Murrayfield.
Having announced on Tuesday that he would keep faith with the 23 that slipped to a late 26-24 defeat by France, head coach Stuart Lancaster has also opted to retain the same starting line-up.
“It’s good to be able to select the same players and they are all determined to put last week’s result behind them and build on the performance,” Lancaster said.
“Scotland will be hugely motivated by their defeat in Dublin and, as we found two years ago, Murrayfield is a tough place to play.”
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The only outstanding concerns from the championship opener in Paris were the injuries sustained by lock Courtney Lawes and wing Jonny May.
However, Lawes’ cheekbone damage was revealed to be only bruising and he was cleared to play in Edinburgh the following day and May was passed fit 24 hours later despite having incurred a fractured nose.
May, who lasted just nine minutes at the Stade de France, continues on the left wing and will win his third cap, while centre Luther Burrell and right wing Nowell make their second Test appearances.
Burrell crossed on his debut and alongside fellow international newcomer Nowell grew in stature as a chaotic but compelling match unfolded in Paris.
Nowell’s Chiefs team-mate, Matt Jess, praised the Cornishman for his performance on his international debut.
And former Cornish Pirate Jess says Nowell’s selection for England – and that of Tom Johnson, Henry Slade, Dave Ewers, Joel Conlon and Stuart Townsend across the Saxons and Under-20s – will inspire the club’s academy players for many years to come.
Jess, who is set to feature in Chiefs’ Premiership match against Northampton Saints tomorrow evening, said: “Nowellsy did very well last week and with it being an unchanged format this weekend, it has been outstanding for him.
“It just shows you where Exeter are going as a club. With him and Tom Johnson in the England squad, it is absolutely great.
“It shows you what the club is about. We see what [skills coach] Ricky Pellow does with the lads. Those young players, under Rob Baxter and Rob Hunter and Ali Hepher as well, they come on leaps and bounds.
“The younger guys see the likes of Jack and then Dave Ewers and Henry Slade getting in the Saxons, it is a massive boost for any player coming in to be involved with the academy. They can look at it and say that they want to be involved with England as well in the future. It is fantastic.”
England: @ Brown (Harlequins); Nowell (Exeter Chiefs), Burrell (Northampton), Twelvetrees (Gloucester), May (Gloucester); Farrell (Saracens), Care (Harlequins); Marler (Harlequins), Hartley (Northampton), Cole (Leicester), Launchbury (Wasps), Lawes (Northampton), Wood (Northampton), Robshaw (Harlequins), B Vunipola (Saracens). Replacements: Youngs (Leicester), M Vunipola (Saracens), Thomas (Sale), Attwood (Bath), Morgan (Gloucester), Dickson (Northampton), Barritt (Saracens), Goode (Saracens).