With less than 100 days remaining until the kickoff of the 2024 Guinness Six Nations, Steve Borthwick faces the task of fine-tuning England’s squad. The selection process is poised to be more about evolution than revolution, emphasizing strategic choices for optimal performance.

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In a recent conversation with Felix Jones in Stade de France, the realization of the swiftly approaching Six Nations hit home. Even in the aftermath of his second consecutive World Cup triumph with the Springboks, Jones graciously shared insights into his future with Steve Borthwick’s England side.

England’s campaign kicks off in Rome on February 3, a mere 95 days away. Borthwick, aiming for evolution rather than a radical overhaul, faces challenging decisions in shaping the team. Here’s a speculative glimpse into the potential lineup:

  • Freddie Steward: Borthwick’s approach to full-back selection is known to be influenced by the game plan tailored to opponents and weather conditions. Steward’s solidity aligns well with the gritty nature of the Six Nations. While Marcus Smith remains in contention as a second playmaker, we will closely monitor other contenders such as Max Malins, Henry Arundell, and the recovering Josh Hodge from Exeter.
  • Tom Roebuck: With Jonny May’s departure, the experience of Anthony Watson will be crucial for England. However, there’s a need to inject freshness into the backline. Borthwick introduced Ollie Hassell-Collins in a recent outing, emerges as a promising option, known for his try-scoring prowess. As the anticipation builds for the 2024 Guinness Six Nations, England’s squad selection under Borthwick promises a strategic blend of experience and emerging talent to navigate the challenges ahead.

Crafting England’s Midfield: Potential Starting XV for the 2024 Guinness SN

As the countdown to the 2024 Guinness Six Nations begins, Steve Borthwick faces pivotal decisions in shaping England’s midfield for the upcoming tournament. With less than 100 days to go, the selection process hints at an evolution rather than a revolution, introducing fresh faces while building on the foundation set in recent campaigns.

Here’s a speculative look at the potential starting XV:

  • Ollie Lawrence: With Joe Marchant’s move to Stade Français adding a layer of uncertainty to the midfield, the question of Henry Slade’s return remains. Shifting the versatile Ollie Lawrence to outside centre, his likely best position for Six Nations, could bring out the best in the 24-year-old, who now boasts 21 caps and is poised for further growth.
  • Dan Kelly: As Manu Tuilagi’s availability lingers, England may be on the verge of developing a new inside centre for Six Nations. At 22, Dan Kelly, who earned a single cap in 2021 and has ties with Borthwick from Leicester Tigers, emerges as a viable option. Alongside the youthful Seb Atkinson of Gloucester, both could provide solutions to a historically challenging position.
  • Elliot Daly: Despite questions, Elliot Daly’s standout performance in the World Cup semi-final against South Africa highlights his enduring value at the top level. As one of the few back-three ball-players in England, his experience becomes an asset, likely complementing emerging talents in the squad.
  • Owen Farrell: The pressing question is whether George Ford or Marcus Smith will join Owen Farrell in the match-day 23. The dynamic between the three will be crucial, with Farrell benefiting from the selection of an inside centre capable of fluid ball movement, such as Kelly or Atkinson and that’s the emerging sign for Six Nations.

England’s Dynamic Forward Pack for the 2024 Six Nations

As the countdown to the 2024 Guinness Six Nations intensifies, Steve Borthwick faces crucial decisions in shaping England’s forward pack for the upcoming tournament. With less than 100 days until kickoff, the focus is on evolution, with a blend of experienced leaders and emerging talent forming the foundation for England’s campaign.

  • Theo Dan: Crucial for Theo Dan is time in the saddle to sharpen his set-piece responsibilities, particularly throwing and scrummaging. At 22, he aims to complement his fierce carrying with refined technical skills. A prominent role in the forthcoming Six Nations and increased involvement with Saracens could set the stage for his continued development.
  • Will Stuart: After a World Cup where he seemed destined for more game time, Stuart faces the challenge to step up, especially with the departure of Dan Cole. A robust scrum is a priority, and Stuart’s potential to improve in attack adds versatility to his role in the pack.
  • Maro Itoje: As England’s on-field line-out leader, Maro Itoje had another stellar World Cup. At 29, he remains a cornerstone of the squad, making him a prime candidate for the Rugby Football Union’s hybrid contracts. His established connection with Theo Dan adds a layer of cohesion to the front row.
  • Ollie Chessum: Battling back from a challenging injury, Chessum showcased resilience during the World Cup and continued his progress from the 2023 Six Nations. With versatility in balancing the back five according to strategy, Borthwick values a hybrid forward at blindside flanker. Adapting to the retirement of Courtney Lawes, Chessum’s contributions become pivotal in the pack.

As England readies itself for the 2024 Guinness Six Nations, this forward pack reflects a strategic blend of experience, resilience, and emerging talent, setting the stage for a formidable presence on the international rugby stage.

England’s Dynamic Back Row: Key Players for the Guinness Six Nations 2024

As the countdown to the 2024 Guinness Six Nations gains momentum, Steve Borthwick faces intriguing choices in assembling England’s back row for the upcoming tournament. With less than 100 days until the opening match, the focus is on dynamic and versatile players who can shape the team’s performance.

Here’s a closer look at the potential back-row lineup:

  • George Martin: Injured but outstanding in his game against the Springboks, Martin is poised to become a stalwart for England. His ability to tackle opposition runners, excel in mauls, and provide crucial scrum ballast positions him as a valuable asset. With interchangeability with Ollie Chessum, Martin’s imposing carrier skills, evidenced at Leicester Tigers, add another dimension to England’s back row.
  • Tom Curry: Coming off a challenging campaign marked by a red card and semi-final fallout, Curry is eager to make his mark in the Six Nations. His role as a line-out jumper and involvement in wide channels will be interesting to observe. Depending on Borthwick’s strategy, Curry could feature at openside flanker, with players like Tom Pearson, Lewis Ludlam, Jack Kenningham, or Chessum or Martin donning the number six jersey.

As England prepares for the 2024 Guinness Six Nations, the back-row combination of Martin, Curry, and Earl exemplifies a blend of dynamism, adaptability, and emerging talent, setting the stage for an impactful and competitive tournament.

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