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Dublin: 13 °C Thursday 18 October, 2018

Boost for England as Billy Vunipola set for return to club action this weekend

The number eight could well feature against Ireland in this year’s Six Nations after all.

Billy Vunipola leaves the November Test injured.
Billy Vunipola leaves the November Test injured.
Image: Paul Harding/PA Wire/PA Images

ENGLAND COULD WELL have the services of Billy Vunipola for the remainder of this year’s Six Nations campaign as he is set for an early return to club action this weekend.

The number eight has been out of action since November with a knee injury but it is being reported by the BBC this morning that his recovery has gone better than expected and could play for Saracens this weekend.

This means the 24-year-old would be in line to face Scotland on 11 March and Ireland — in what Joe Schmidt hopes will be a Six Nations decider — a week later.

Capped 32 times by England, Vunipola was played a key role in their unbeaten 2016 season and Eddie Jones will be keen to get him involved with the international set-up again as soon as possible.

It was initially reported that Vunipola would miss the entire Six Nations campaign but it now looks like he’s set to follow in the footsteps of big brother Mako who made his own comeback from injury to come on as a replacement in the win over Italy.

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Steve O'Rourke

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