Marcus Smith shows he is ready to take England to next level this World Cup
By Rugby Onslaught

Marcus Smith shows he is ready to take England to next level this World Cup

One thing that England failed to do in the 2019 World Cup final was convert pressure into points. Time and time again Eddie Jones’ men tried to batter their way through the South African defence, and came away empty handed.

If tries and penalties are hard to come by, there is an easy solution, but one that is not very common. That is the drop goal. For a team that basically won a World Cup in 2003 with their savvy utilisation of the drop goal, it has basically become a forgotten tool in English rugby- until now.

Both Marcus Smith and Henry Slade were filmed this week during training with England in Brighton working on their drop kicks, as new head coach Steve Borthwick is clearly not planning on repeating the mistakes of the past.

Whether it is Smith or Slade that are called upon to try and slot a drop goal at England’s time of need at the World Cup is yet to be seen, particularly as Owen Farrell and George Ford are yet to join the England camp after both played in the Gallagher Premiership final.

How are England’s drop goals looking?


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by England Rugby (@englandrugby)

For now, Smith and Slade are still in the England squad, which was whittled down to 36 players today. Here is the latest squad:

36-player training squad:
Forwards (19)
Jamie Blamire (Newcastle Falcons)
Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers)
Alex Dombrandt (Harlequins)
Tom Dunn (Bath Rugby)
Charlie Ewels (Bath Rugby)
Ellis Genge (Bristol Bears)
Joe Heyes (Leicester Tigers)
Ted Hill (Bath Rugby)
Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints)
Lewis Ludlam (Northampton Saints)
Joe Marler (Harlequins)
George Martin (Leicester Tigers)
Zach Mercer (Montpellier Hérault Rugby)
Tom Pearson (London Irish)
Val Rapava-Ruskin (Gloucester Rugby)
David Ribbans (Northampton Saints)
Kyle Sinckler (Bristol Bears)
Will Stuart (Bath Rugby)
Sam Underhill (Bath Rugby)

Backs (17)
Henry Arundell (London Irish)
Danny Care (Harlequins)
Joe Cokanasiga (Bath Rugby)
Fraser Dingwall (Northampton Saints)
Tommy Freeman (Northampton Saints)
Joe Marchant (Harlequins)
Jonny May (Gloucester Rugby)
Alex Mitchell (Northampton Saints)
Cadan Murley (Harlequins)
Guy Porter (Leicester Tigers)
Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs)
Fin Smith (Northampton Saints)
Marcus Smith (Harlequins)
Freddie Steward (Leicester Tigers)
Jack van Poortvliet (Leicester Tigers)
Anthony Watson (Leicester Tigers)
Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers)