"England hopes over" - Vunipola handed second red card of his career - Ruck

“England hopes over” – Vunipola handed second red card of his career

In a potential setback for his England comeback bid, Mako Vunipola’s red card in the closing moments of the latest victory might have dashed his chances.

Conversely, his teammate Ben Earl seems to have solidified his claim to the No 8 position.

Vunipola faces the looming threat of a ban following a contentious hit on Newcastle hooker Bryan Byrne in Saracens’ latest game. Despite another bonus-point triumph that propels Saracens into a strong position for the second half of the season, Vunipola’s indiscretion could jeopardize his aspirations to rejoin the England squad.

Having missed out on the World Cup campaign in France, the 32-year-old was aiming to impress England head coach Steve Borthwick for a potential Six Nations recall. However, the red card, coupled with his previous dismissal at Newcastle last year, will see him absent from crucial matches just five weeks before England’s opening fixture against Italy.

Saracens’ Director of Rugby, Mark McCall, remains optimistic that Vunipola might avoid a ban. McCall points to mitigating circumstances, empathising that Vunipola was involved in a sandwich tackle on Byrne, leading to the unfortunate timing of contact.

Why Owen Farrell and England teammate fell out and didn’t speak

Owen Farrell, the English fly-half, has gained a reputation for boldly voicing his viewpoints, particularly when directed at individuals he harbors adverse feelings for.

#1. Dave Attwood

Former England lock Attwood has opened up on the latest RugbyPass Offload about his ongoing rivalry with Owen Farrell.

He revealed: “On the pitch, I struggle a lot with Owen Farrell. We just don’t see eye to eye on a lot of things,

“He hates me with a passion. Despite my earthy roots, he thinks I am a posh c***. He hates that. I bagged rugby league once jovially. I was saying it to take the piss kind of thing, ‘a bloody sport for the peasants’. He f**kin’ hated it.

” I was saying it to take the piss kind of thing, ‘a bloody sport for the peasants’. He f**kin’ hated it and out in Italy or maybe France he fully lost the plot. He had a bit of a shout at me and went off to the toilet and I followed him.

“We all had a drink or two after the game but we didn’t need to get carried away with this. I was in the urinal behind the door and he was three or four down and as I got in his dad walked in as well, he was coaching at the time. He was, ‘I don’t want to fuckin’ hear it’ or something like that and as he walked out he went to open the door and slam it into the back of me. There was like a stop on the floor so it hit the stop and almost clocked him back…

“We never really addressed it after that. 

“So whenever we play each other there is always some element in the game where one of us is running at the other one or we are trying to bang each other. There always seems to be an element of that to it. I am sure he is like, I don’t even know that Dave is playing.”

Read more.

Dave Attwood facts:

He made 157 appearances in Blue, Black and White over an eight-year period during his first spell at Bath before returning in 2022

His debut came against Newcastle Falcons at the beginning of the 2011/12 season after arriving from Gloucester, scoring four tries in his first campaign

The lock quickly established himself as a key player in the Bath pack and excelled at international level too, with 22 of his 24 England caps coming whilst at the Re

The former England international has also played for Bristol (twice), Gloucester and Toulon during his established career

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