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Worries over Jonny May’s fitness as England wing injures shoulder

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England face an anxious wait for an update on the fitness of Jonny May after the Leicester wing suffered a shoulder injury in Saturday’s 23-15 victory over Northampton.

May was forced off in the eighth minute of the Gallagher Premiership clash at Twickenham with his right arm wrapped in a makeshift sling and he cut a dejected figure as he watched the remainder of the game from the stands.

Eddie Jones names his squad for the autumn series on Thursday week and a doubt now hangs over May’s availability for the Tests against South Africa, New Zealand, Japan and Australia.

“Jonny got a bang directly on the point of his shoulder, which is his A/C. I haven’t had a report from the physios just yet,” Leicester interim coach Geordan Murphy said.

“It was a bit sore and he put his ice on it straight away. Sometimes you can just strap him up and play, sometimes they take a few weeks. It is not too severe but it was sore.”

Northampton endured a setback during the warm-up when their England second row Courtney Lawes aggravated a back spasm, but director of rugby Chris Boyd expects a swift recovery.

“Courtney woke up and had a back problem. We didn’t think it would be significant, but when he came out to run he couldn’t. He put it down to the bed he was sleeping in,” Boyd said.

“We stayed at a place down the road in Teddington. I think it’s a problem when the bed is 5’11” and he’s 6’11”.

“The squad has to be bigger than one person. I think he will wake up in two days and it will be gone. They can be grim for a short period of time then disappear as quick as they came along.

“He is pretty down on himself and feels he has left himself and the team down so is pretty grumpy at the moment.”

Northampton’s defeat was not the scripted ending for an East Midlands derby played at Twickenham in aid of Rob Horne, their former Australia centre who was forced to retire in April due to paralysis of his right arm sustained during a collision.

“It’s disappointing that we couldn’t get the victory that Rob deserved,” Boyd said.

“The loss is painful, the fact that it is a local derby is painful and the fact that we wanted to respect Rob and couldn’t get across the line is also painful. It is not a very happy changing room.

“Rob is a good man and we would have liked to have got the outcome – but the important thing for him is that we can help him with his journey going forward.”

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Exeter Chiefs return to the top of the Gallagher Premiership thanks to a last-gasp victory over Bristol Bears in a fiercly-contested encounter at Ashton Gate.

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