Oakham rugby star out of World Cup with injury

By Evie Payne

14th Aug 2023 | Rugby

Jack van Poortvliet plays for Leicester Tigers. Image credit: Leicester Tigers.
Jack van Poortvliet plays for Leicester Tigers. Image credit: Leicester Tigers.

Jack van Poortvliet has been ruled out of the World Cup squad following injury.

It has been confirmed today that England's scrum-half will not be playing in the upcoming World Cup matches following the on-pitch collision with team mate Ollie Lawrence.

The loss of Jack van Poortvliet, who usually plays number 9, will be a blow to the team and head coach, Steven Borthwick. This blow is only worsened by tomorrow's looming disciplinary of Owen Farrell following his red card on Saturday.

Farrell has previously been called up for high tackles, and risks being suspended for up to six weeks.

Alex Mitchell has been called up to the 33-man squad, although Ben Youngs is the most likely replacement for Poortvliet.

Poortvliet became a well-known name not just in Oakham, but internationally, when the then-21-year-old was elected for the England team in June 2022.

Prior to this he played for Leicester Tigers, having been a part of the club's academy since the age of 12. Jack joined Oakham School at the age of 13 to progress his rugby, rising up the ranks both at school and at the Tigers academy.

Originally a fly half, he switched position inside to scrum half, a position he played as Leicester won the Under 18s academy league in the 2017-18 and 2018–19 seasons.

Following his stream of successes, in July 2019, van Poortvliet was one of 11 players offered contracts to join the club's development squad. He made his first team debut for Leicester on the 21st of September 2019 in a Premiership Rugby Cup match against Worcester Warriors at Sixways.

On 3 January 2020, van Poortvliet was named in the England under 20 squad for the 2020 Six Nations Championship, featuring in the first two matches against France and Scotland.

Since then, he has become a favourite on the England squad and was expected to play in all of the upcoming World Cup games.

England will be playing Argentina without him in their next major fixture on 9 September 2023.


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