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Tom Youngs to miss New Zealand tour

07 May 2014

  • Hooker Tom Youngs to remain in UK with ill wife
  • Lancaster also confirms Corbisiero, Croft, Nowell and Wade will not tour
England hooker Tom Youngs, who will miss the tour to New Zealand

Photo: Getty Images

Leicester Tigers hooker Tom Youngs will miss England’s three-Test, four-match tour to New Zealand this June.

The 27 year-old, who has won 20 caps since making his debut against Fiji in November 2012, will remain at home to support his wife, who is undergoing treatment for an illness.

England Head Coach Stuart Lancaster outlined the squad’s support for Tom and his family at this difficult time and said it is unquestionably the right decision to miss the tour.

“Our thoughts are with Tom and Tiffany at this time and it is entirely right that he stays at home to support her and their daughter Maisie,” he said. “Everyone in the England squad sends them our best wishes.”

Leicester Tigers Director of Rugby Richard Cockerill concurred and added that people should repsect the family’s privacy.

He said: “These things are more important than rugby, and Tom and his family have the full support of everyone at Leicester Tigers. We hope everyone respects their privacy at this time.”

England wing Christian Wade, who will miss the tour to New Zealand

Photo: Getty Images

In addition to Youngs, loose head Alex Corbisiero (Northampton Saints), flanker Tom Croft (Leicester Tigers) and wings Jack Nowell (Exeter Chiefs) and Christian Wade (London Wasps) have also been ruled out of contention for the tour.

Lancaster is taking a long-term view on the availability of the quartet, feeling that the individuals, and ultimately England, will benefit from a rest and a carefully managed pre-season after battling back from substantial injuries.

He said: “Alex and Tom have worked really hard to come back before the end of the season but they will not have played enough rugby for them to be considered for such a tour. It’s the same with Christian Wade.

“They have all had significant injuries and their return to play has been carefully managed in conjunction with their clubs. It will be a short-term loss but a long-term gain for us and their clubs as we enter a huge 18 months.  

“Jack needs to get his knee sorted so he will be ready for next season and the World Cup and it’s the right decision for him to have the operation next week.”

England’s medical team are also liaising with Bath Rugby and Gloucester Rugby over injuries to Rob Webber (knee) and Billy Twelvetrees (ankle) respectively.

Lancaster will announce the first group of players for the New Zealand tour on May 15, with  a full touring party announced on May 26 after the complexities of availability from domestic and European finals are resolved.