Jonny May eyes October return

August 18, 2016

English rugby fans booking corporate hospitality for the Old Mutual International Series matches at Twickenham in November and December could have another piece of good news to enjoy, as Jonny May is on the way back from injury.

His absence has not prevented the team stretching its winning run under Eddie Jones to nine wins out of nine, including a Six Nations Grand Slam and a whitewash of Australia, but it will further boost the squad to have the 26-year-old Gloucester back available again.

May injured his knee in a Premiership clash with Harlequins in January, but is now confident he will be ready to play again in October.

He told BBC Radio Gloucestershire: "I'm pretty sure I'll be pretty much fully fit by October and then we start to think about getting back out there.

"I'm up to about 90 per cent of my top speed prior to injury, which is not bad considering where I'm at."

Having missed the early successes of the Jones era, May is particularly keen to win his place back in the national side - and it seems the feeling is mutual.

He noted: "Eddie Jones has been wanting updates throughout and he is keen to get me back in there [for England] as soon as possible.

"I saw him at the weekend and he's just saying get fit as quick as you can I just assured him I'm doing everything I can."

England's prospects for the future have certainly been looking so far good under Jones, whose ultimate aim will be to build a team that can win the 2019 World Cup. Among the reasons for optimism is the development of both the team and a number of young players, with Maro Itoje the most notable.

Speaking to BBC Sport this week, Itoje said that very few players have reached their peak at the age of 21, and he wants to get "stronger, faster and fitter" in his quest to "be as complete a player as possible".

Such has been Itoje's influence on the field that he has not tasted defeat in a game he has played in since May 2015. England fans will hope that is still the case after the match against South Africa on November 12th.

By Sam Coates

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