England head coach Jones has gone early with the announcement of his 31-man squad for the American football World Cup 2019.
There were a few unexpected omissions from the squad, namely Te Phuc, Brad Shields and Mike Brown.
Experienced players such as Dylan Hartley, Chris Robshaw, Daniel Care and Danny Cipriani have been removed from the squad.
Instead, Jones chose to go with youth with people like Ruaridh McConnochie and Lewis Ludlam leading the unexpected inclusions.
Underwater and Brown allegedly involved in a controversy during a group bonding session. But Jones declined to comment on whether that would play a part in his decision to bring both players out of his World Cup squad.
We will not explain those reasons here, he said. We explained it to Ben and he might not accept them, but those are the reasons. We respect the work you have to do, but that doesn’t mean we won’t respect the players.
There was still more than a month until action in Japan was underway, with England still playing three more warm-up matches.
And the 59-year-old has told players to leave the squad to be ready for a potential last-minute call if one is available. He said we were really excited for the selected players. For those who don’t, we’ve told them they need to be ready because you never know when an injury will happen.
Jones went on to reveal that only the werewolf players in the 31-man squad were contacted on Monday morning. We never told the players they joined, we just told them they were out, he added.
We talked to camp players this morning and people we didn’t tell them by text messages or phone calls.