Fixtures - Top Bar

Hill: Nowell deserves England call

Jack Nowell’s sparkling Aviva Premiership Rugby performances for Exeter Chiefs have earned him an England recall and Sam Hill’s form suggests it won’t be long before he becomes a fully-fledged international too.

But the 21-year-old is happy to play the waiting game for now after helping the Chiefs realign their sights back onto the top four.

Two wins in two have seen Exeter kick a run of bad form to the curb, having lost four on the bounce before Aviva Premiership Rugby returned from its month-long break.  

Star of the show last week was Henry Slade, who is set on making the No.10 shirt his own at Sandy Park after a 27-point haul at Harlequins.

Slade was at fly-half for England Saxons last month while teammates Luke-Cowan Dickie, Dave Ewers and Thomas Waldrom all received recognition too.

And Hill, who has also appeared for the Saxons, said: “We’ve got a few boys here at Exeter who’ve been unlucky not to get in to the Saxons side but they’ll keep on working hard here and working on their weaknesses over the next few seasons.

“You’ve just got to try to play as well as you can for your club and that’s how you progress at the national level, really. You get noticed playing for your club and it all starts from there.

“It’s really great for Jack (Nowell), it’s really well deserved. Ever since he’s returned from injury we’ve been playing well. I hope he starts, I think he will.”

Just one point separates third-placed Saracens and Wasps, who are all the way back in seventh – and the Chiefs are right in the thick of it in fourth.

And if this weekend all works out to perfection for Rob Baxter’s men they could leapfrog a Bath Rugby side sitting precariously in second, only three points ahead of that pack.

“It’s quite surprising how close it is at the top – there’s only about one point separating a lot of teams so every game counts,” Hill added.

“We have the potential to finish in the top four, but we’re not thinking about that. We just take each game as it comes and see what happens at the end of the season.

“Every little helps and even the bonus points are so important at this stage because they all add up at the end of the season.”

Tickets for the Aviva Premiership Rugby final are on sale. Click here to snap one up: premiershiprugby.com/final
 

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