Dai Young: Wasps boss backs his players to feature heavily in latest England squad

By Chris JonesBBC Radio 5 live rugby reporter
Sam Jones of Wasps
Wasps flanker Sam Jones (centre) has been been tipped for an England call-up by Dai Young

England coach Eddie Jones will name his 45-man Elite Player Squad squad ahead of the autumn Tests at 10:00 BST on Friday.

Dai Young, boss of Premiership leaders Wasps, expects a number of his in-form players to make the cut.

"I'd like to think, the way we've played, we'll have a few in there," Young told BBC Sport.

"I know [Jones has] had contact with some of the players on a regular basis - we have got a number in the mix."

Jones will also name a trimmed down party of approximately 35 for a training camp in Brighton next week.

The final squad before the autumn Tests will be named on 26 October, and with injuries to Wasps' James Haskell and Harlequins' Jack Clifford, England currently have a void at open-side flanker.

Northampton's Teimana Harrison started there in England's last match - against Australia in Sydney as Jones' men wrapped up a series whitewash - and is set to be named in Friday's squad.

But the Wasps' pair of Guy Thompson and Sam Jones have impressed so far this campaign.

"There has been a lot of talk about Guy with his form at the start of the season," added Young.

"And everyone knows what a big fan I am of Sam Jones - his work-rate is phenomenal."

Hooker Tommy Taylor has been "excellent" according to Young, while Wasps number eight Nathan Hughes is likely to be involved having qualified on residency in the summer.

Scrum-halves Joe Simpson and Dan Robson have also both stood out in partnership with fly-half Danny Cipriani.

Leicester's Zimbabwe-born flanker Mike Williams
Leicester's Zimbabwe-born flanker Mike Williams is definitely in Jones' plans

Meanwhile, Leicester flanker Will Evans has been touted as a possible solution to England's number seven conundrum.

Evans starred for the Junior World Championship-winning Under-20s in the summer, and followed that by being named in an England training squad in August.

It is understood Evans is set be named in the EPS on Friday, but his director of rugby at the Tigers, Richard Cockerill, says the 19-year-old should not yet be thrust into the international arena.

"Will is not ready to play international rugby," Cockerill told BBC Sport.

"The reality is he has started one game for Leicester, and before that he was playing for Ampthill in National One.

"Eddie sees him as a project player and is keen to get the transfer from 20s to the senior group - and his potential is huge.

"He is a great young player, who is going to be very, very good. But at the moment but he is not ready yet [for Test rugby]."

However, Cockerill feels differently about Mike Williams, the Zimbabwe-born Tigers forward, who is a firm part of Jones' plans, and could even make his England debut come November.

"Mike Williams has a little bit more experience," Cockerill said of the 24-year-old.

"Given the opportunity he is ready to step up to Test match level today."

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