Manu Tuilagi returns to England’s matchday squad to face Wales
The Leicester centre has not played for England since June 2014 because of a groin injury and disciplinary issues
He replaces Alex Goode in the 24-man squad and is likely to start on the bench
England are preparing to unleash the “deadly” power of Manu Tuilagi against Wales at Twickenham on Saturday after the Leicester centre was named in an RBS Six Nations match-day squad for the first time in two years.
The Leicester centre has held his place in the squad at the expense of the gifted Saracens fullback Alex Goode, who will feel bitterly disappointed by this turn of events.
Tuilagi has not been seen in his country’s match-day party since the summer tour of New Zealand in 2014, thanks to a deep-seated groin problem, so the overwhelming likelihood is that coach Eddie Jones will run him as an impact player off the bench.
“He may have only 20 minutes of Test rugby in him, but it could be quite a 20 minutes,” Jones said after the important victory over Ireland 11 days ago.
Head coach Jones will name his starting XV to face Wales on Thursday at 10am.
Exeter hooker Luke Cowan-Dickie provides cover for Jamie George, who suffered an arm injury in training last Thursday and will undergo further checks.
Kieran Brookes has been named in place of Saints team-mate Paul Hill for the game between the two unbeaten countries in this season’s competition.