Even prior to his recent injury concerns, Jack Nowell appeared to be on the fringes of the England squad.
The 27-year-old hasn’t featured for his country since the 2019 Rugby World Cup – his final appearance to date was a 39-10 win over Argentina when he scored a try.
Nowell hasn’t played any rugby at all since having toe surgery after the Premiership final in October and suffered a fresh setback earlier this month which ruled out any chance of an England call any time soon.
Those factors mean his England chances – at least in the short term – are becoming slim.
But Warren Gatland has already proven he is a fan of Nowell after he handed him a shock call up for the 2017 Lions tour; he played twice against the All Blacks, and in doing so became Exeter’s first-ever Lions player.
Will Gatland take the gamble on his recovery from injury and go with someone he knows over a more emerging option from elsewhere?