Five released England stars join A squad ahead of Portugal clash - Ruck

Five released England stars join A squad ahead of Portugal clash

Five players from the England Six Nations squad have been reassigned, joining England A, previously known as the Saxons, for a match against Portugal this weekend.

Borthwick expressed his satisfaction with the resurgence of the developmental team at Welford Road.

“It’s an important step for players who have come out of the Under 20s and are playing club rugby, to be able to get into the international environment to prepare to play for England,” he said.  “Since we’ve not had the Saxons or the A team, that group of players, now in their early to mid-20s, are striving to make that next level to international rugby and haven’t had that platform. This provides that next stage. 

“For selection these players must have the potential of being in the England team in the very near future. That’s the focus. We’ve got a lot of exciting young players in this country, and this is an opportunity for them. This England A game is really important, I can’t overstate the importance of re-establishing this team. So, to do this at Leicester Tigers’ stadium is incredible. It’s such an iconic stadium and one I know very well. It’s an area where the supporters know rugby, they love rugby, and I’m sure they’ll be out there supporting England in numbers.  

“Portugal’s performance in the Rugby World Cup was incredibly impressive. Not only in the outstanding way they played, but also the way they attacked every game. I thought that showed the character and the spirit that they have in their team.” 

England players released to A squad


His deep-rooted connection with Bath Rugby dates to before he was born with father, Steve, playing for the club in the 1990s, but he has now forged his own path, making huge strides on the field from inside centre.

An exciting player who consistently has supporters on the edge of their seats every time he receives the ball, Ojomoh debuted for his hometown club in the Premiership Rugby Cup and worked relentlessly hard thereafter to develop his game and earn his next opportunity in senior colours. 

Bath Rugby player Max Ojomoh breaks during the Gallagher Premiership rugby game between Leicester Tigers and Bath Rugby at Mattioli Woods Welford Road on December 31st- PHOTO: Steve Bond/PPAUK

That came in form of a Gallagher Premiership debut at London Irish and his maiden European outing followed a week later against Zebre. He finished the campaign with two 80-minute performances which led to England recognition as Eddie Jones called him up to his summer training squad.

Since then, Ojomoh’s ball-playing skills and excellent attacking play have been viewed wider afield with the return of fans and he was voted by the RPA’s Premiership MVP for October.

A key component of Bath Rugby’s future, the centre graduated from the Academy in February 2022 alongside longstanding teammate Orlando Bailey.