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Manu Tuilagi likely to miss next year's Six Nations through injury

Sale Sharks centre Manu Tuilagi could be out for up to six months with a torn Achilles tendon, wh...



Sale Sharks centre Manu Tuilagi could be out for up to six months with a torn Achilles tendon, which could rule him out of next year's Six Nations, and could jeopardise his chances for a trip to South Africa with the Lions.

Tuilagi started at 12 in Sale's winning effort against Northampton on Tuesday, although he was substituted in the 13th minute.

Sale beat the Saints 14-34, with tries from Simon Hammersley, Valery Morozov, Rohan Janse van Rensburg and a brace from Luke James.

The England centre will undergo surgery next week, which will see him out of action for the remainder of the current Six Nations Championship as well as the Autumn Internationals and next year's Six Nations.

This will be a concern for Eddie Jones, as he is set to announce his preliminary squad for the matches against the Barbarians and Italy that take place at the end of next month as the prelude to the Autumn Nations Cup

Additionally, the Lions tour will commence in July next year, however Tuilagi would need to prove his fitness by the time of the squad announcement around May.

This is the latest in a long line of injuries for the 29-year-old which has hindered his international career, having missed a full two years of international rugby between 2014 and 2016.

Manu Tuilagi of England during the Guinness Six Nations Rugby Championship match between Ireland and England in the Aviva Stadium in Dublin Manu Tuilagi of England during the Guinness Six Nations Rugby Championship match between Ireland and England in the Aviva Stadium in Dublin. Photo by Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile

Tuilagi has earned 43 caps for England since making his debut in 2011, and has scored 85 points internationally.

He toured with the Lions to Australia in 2013, making his Lions test debut off the bench, and starting against the Western Force, Queensland Reds and Melbourne Rebels.

Courtney Lawes is also a doubt for the start of England's international schedule due to an ankle injury that he sustained while playing for Northampton in the same match.

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B&I Lions British And Irish Lions England Manu Tuilagi Sale Sharks