"Uncapped forward" - 29 year old London Irish flanker set to be called up by Steve Borthwick - Ruck

“Uncapped forward” – 29 year old London Irish flanker set to be called up by Steve Borthwick

Matt Rogerson, captain of London Irish, has unexpectedly risen as a potential candidate for England’s World Cup squad.

According to reliable sources from Telegraph Sport, it is understood that the 29-year-old, who has yet to receive an international cap, has been included in an extensive roster of approximately 70 aspiring players contacted by Steve Borthwick in recent weeks.

Borthwick’s expanded list for the 2023 Rugby World Cup is believed to feature other uncapped individuals, including Theo Dan, the Saracens hooker, as well as Tom Pearson, who plays alongside Rogerson at London Irish.

Rogerson joined the Exiles from Jersey Reds ahead of the 18/19 season.

He made his Premiership debut for Irish in November 2019 against Wasps and has since been a regular in Declan Kidney’s side.

He made 26 appearances in all competitions in 2019/20, scoring twice in the Gallagher Premiership.

Matt Rogerson, Captain of London Irish during the Gallagher Premiership match between London Irish and Leicester Tigers at The Gtech Community Stadium, London on 25 February 2023 (Photo: Danny Loo/PPAUK)

Rogerson was named the Club captain for the 2021/22 season, going on to lead the side to their first appearance in the Heineken Champions Cup for the first time in a decade after an eighth-placed finish in the Gallagher Premiership. 

That year, he made 193 successful tackles (23rd overall in the Premiership) and 380 attacking ruck arrivals (seventh overall in the Premiership). 

Rogerson was also in the top five of ball carries (152) with the third-most carry metres into contact at the Club (681), with his 19 tackle breaks only bettered in the back-row by

Billy Vunipola back in the fold

Vunipola’s potential recall to the England squad for the World Cup training in June hinges on his recovery progress from a knee injury.

If he is on track with his rehabilitation, the strong number 8 will likely be included in the squad ahead of the 2023 Rugby World Cup.

Five weeks ago, Vunipola suffered a meniscus tear while playing for La Rochelle. This injury led to his exclusion from England’s Six Nations squad earlier this year, as head coach Steve Borthwick opted for Alex Dombrandt, Sam Simmonds, and Lewis Ludlam ahead of him.

Zach Mercer, who currently plays in France, is another player competing for the same position as Vunipola.

However, according to the i, Vunipola recently had a conversation with Borthwick, who was present at Saracens’ victory over Northampton on Saturday.

This discussion has presented a potential opportunity for the 30-year-old to add to his 68 international caps.

Advertisement

Vunipola addressed rumours of a previous row with Borthwick, when the latter was an England assistant, in an interview with the Sunday Times, saying: “It came at a time when we’d been in camp for a long time.

“We didn’t really have a fall-out, we had different ideas and I was young and immature and what I said came out the wrong way.

“For people to say that this was the reason why Steve dropped me is not correct. I wasn’t killing it last autumn [when he was left out by Eddie Jones] and I realised that I simply needed to get better.”

Mail Online predict the entire England 2023 Rugby World Cup squad


With under six months to go, the Mail Online have had a go at predicting who will make Steve Borthwick’s England Rugby World Cup squad.

In their article, they ran through every position and assessed options in every position, highlighting those who look certain picks, probable picks and outside chances – provided the players in question are fit come selection time at the end of August.

There were a number of surprises omissions, including Joe Marchant, Billy Vunipola, Ben Earl and the in-form Tom Pearson.

Check out their full selection below:

MAIL ONLINE’S PREDICTED WORLD SQUAD:

FULlBACK: Freddie Steward

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 3371112-1024x828.jpg
Freddie Steward of England during the Six Nations Match between England and Italy at Twickenham, London on 12 Feb 2023 (Photo: Tom Sandberg/PPAUK)

WING: Henry Arundell, Ollie Hassell-Collins, Max Malins, Anthony Watson

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 2945598.jpg
Henry Arundell of London Irish during the Gallagher Premiership match between London Irish and Bath Rugby at The Gtech Community Stadium, London on 1 October 2022 (Photo: Danny Loo/PPAUK)

CENTRE: Elliot Daly, Ollie Lawrence, Henry Slade, Manu Tuilagi

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 3384138.jpg
A frustrated Ollie Lawrence of England during the Guinness Six Nations match between England and France at Twickenham Stadium, Twickenham, London on Saturday 11th March 2023 | Photo: James Fearn/PPAUK.

FLY-HALF: Owen Farrell, George Ford, Marcus Smith

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 3370967-2.jpg
Owen Farrell, Captain of England during the Six Nations Match between England and Italy at Twickenham, London on 12 Feb 2023 (Photo: Tom Sandberg/PPAUK)

CONTINUES ON PAGE TWO