Jack Nowell calls out former teammate Henry Slade after image goes viral on social media - Ruck

Jack Nowell calls out former teammate Henry Slade after image goes viral on social media

Former Exeter winger Jack Nowell has called out Henry Slade after the centre was pictured wearing his shorts during England training.

He commented: “Been gone five minutes, he’s already stole all my kit,”

Nowell, who departs Chiefs this summer to join La Rochelle, ruled himself out of contention for the Rugby World Cup to recover from a number of wriggling injuries.

I am not doing the World Cup, no World Cup. I am just going to chill and get my knee sorted,” said Nowell.

“It was a hard decision not to put myself in for selection for the World Cup but I thought it was something I had to do for myself and my family as well.

“We are going to make the most of being back home in Cornwall, spend the next few weeks there, and then we have got our testimonial tournament at Sandy Park on June 3.”

Going into more depth about his reasons for effectively calling an early end to his international career, Nowell explained: “Eddie [Jones] leaving, Borthers coming in.

Jack Nowell of Exeter Chiefs during the Gallagher Premiership match between Exeter Chiefs and Gloucester Rugby at Sandy Park, Exeter on 28th January 2023. Photo: Tom Sandberg/PPAUK

“I was in contact with Borthers at the start and he let me know I wasn’t going to be involved in the Six Nations which is completely fair enough, new coach, new ideas. There comes a stage when everyone has got to make a decisions on the team.

“I was happy with that, it was my last year at the club [Exeter] so I got to really focus on doing my best for the club and try and focus on getting us into the big games at the end of the season.

“When you do sign abroad you have the option of signing pre-World Cup or post-World Cup, for me I made the decision that it was probably best for me and my family to sign a pre-World Cup contract.

He added: “As much as I would like to have gone to this one [World Cup] and given it a good crack, sometimes you have got to read between the lines and understand you are not in the coach’s favour.

“Don’t get me wrong I would love to have fought for my position and got myself back into playing but family comes first for me.”

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Fullback: Israel Folau (Australia)

Owens said: “For me, it’s nip and tuck between Halfpenny and Folau, next to nothing to choose between them. Leigh is brilliant because under the high ball and with his kicking at goal under pressure. He may not always break the line when running but puts his body on the line in defence and is a top-notch match-winner.

“But I go for Folau – only just, I should stress – because of his ability to seemingly beat his man every time he gets the ball in his hand. He’s such an exciting player and like Leigh he is one of the best under the high ball.

“It’s a toss of a coin for me… and it’s come down in Folau’s favour.”

Winger: Stuart Hogg (Scotland)

Owens said: “How can you fail to be impressed when watching Hogg play. He’s so exciting as he burst into that line and, of course, was named Six Nations player of the tournament.

“I know he’s a full-back for Scotland, but he is so quick and direct he could easily play on the wing. He reminds me a bit of Shane Williams with some of the things he does.

“When you see who is on the other wing in my team, you’ll see how they would work brilliantly in tandem.”

Fixtures for the Six Nations - Round 1

Outside-centre: Brian O’Driscoll (Ireland)

Owens said: “Not only is he one of the greatest centres in the history of rugby union but he’s a fantastic man off the field as well. O’Driscoll has been a wonderful ambassador for the sport and a real leader. He always respected referees and set the right example for others to follow.

“A legend of the game who conducted himself superbly, on and off the pitch.”

Inside-centre: Ma’a Nonu (New Zealand)

Owens said: “He’s another brilliant player and after every game, win or lose, he would come up and give me a hug. Ma’a has always found time at after-match functions or at breakfast if we’ve been staying at the same hotel to come over and have a chat.

“What a player, mind, too. One of the stalwarts of the New Zealand side for so many years.”

Winger: Shane Williams (Wales)

Owens said: “When people ask me who is the best player I have refereed it’s pretty much an impossible task to pick one because I’ve been lucky enough to take charge of so many greats.

“But if I’m pushed, I would pick Shane for what he achieved after coming from football at 17 or 18 years of age.

“He was in the mould of Gerald Davies in how he left defenders gasping for air as he beat them with those dazzling sidesteps. Nobody would fancy defending against a back three of Shane, Hogg and Folau, I can tell you that.”