Eddie Jones has made his move, picking Louis Lynagh in England’s senior rugby squad for the first time.
The 20-year-old Harlequins winger is the son of Wallabies legend Michael and is eligible to play for England, Australia or birth country Italy.
But with Rugby Australia sniffing around following some star turns in the Premiership recently, England’s Aussie coach Jones has selected Lynagh in a 45 man squad for a training camp later this month.
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“I rang him up yesterday and said ‘mate, you don’t sound like an Australian’,” Jones said.
“He said, ‘I know, I have to work on my Australian accent a bit!’
“I played against his father — his father was obviously a brilliant player — and he has got some of those characteristics.
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“He has that strength around his hips to drive through tacklers.
“It’s a good opportunity for him.”
Lynagh was one of eight uncapped players in the squad and he will be working with former NRL coach Anthony Seibold during the three day camp.
Speaking before Lynagh’s selection, England’s director of performance Conor O’Shea admitted he was a flight risk.
“It is a fact of life,” O’Shea told the Daily Mail.
“If not, other countries wouldn’t be doing their jobs.
“If we do our job properly, we get our pathway going.
‘We will still lose players, yes, but more people will have an attachment together — they grow up in little pockets, get bonds and experiences and that is quite difficult to split apart.
“There are some players who will have a parental influence — whether it be a mother from Treviso or father from Australia, who is a bit of a legend — but Louis has come through the English system and it is great to see someone like him do well at Quins.”
England are preparing for November Tests against Tonga, Australia and South Africa.
“This is an exciting squad made up of experienced players and young guys who did well in the summer and earned their place again,” Jones said.
“We have left out some experienced players but we’re really clear that the door isn’t closed to them, and we’re looking forward to seeing them work hard to get back into contention.
“We have five campaigns now until the 2023 World Cup so each one counts, and this is a chance for this 45 to impress the new coaching staff.”
It’s not all bad news for Australian rugby.
The Reds have signed teenage playmaker Tom Lynagh – Louis’ younger brother – and he hopes to represent Australia.
Jones also left some high profile stars out of his squad in Billy and Mako Vunipola, George Ford and Jamie George.
Elliot Daly is also missing through injury.
Jones told the BBC that the omitted players needed to figure out if they want to be involved through to the 2023 Rugby World Cup
“It is not the end of the road,” Jones said.
“It is an opportunity for them to refresh, re-energise and refocus.
“We will see how they go.”
England training squad
Forwards: Jamie Blamire (Newcastle), Callum Chick (Newcastle), Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter), Tom Curry (Sale), Trevor Davison (Newcastle), Alex Dombrandt (Harlequins), Charlie Ewels (Bath), Ellis Genge (Leicester), Joe Heyes (Leicester), Jonny Hill (Exeter), Ted Hill (Worcester), Maro Itoje (Saracens), Jack Kenningham (Harlequins), Courtney Lawes (Northampton), Lewis Ludlam (Northampton), Lewis Ludlow (Gloucester), Joe Marler (Harlequins), George Martin (Leicester), Beno Obano (Bath), Gabriel Oghre (Wasps), Sam Riley (Harlequins), Bevan Rodd (Sale), Sam Simmonds (Exeter), Kyle Sinckler (Bristol), Will Stuart (Bath), Sam Underhill (Bath)
Backs: Mark Atkinson (Gloucester), Owen Farrell (Saracens), George Furbank (Northampton), Ollie Lawrence (Worcester), Louis Lynagh (Harlequins), Max Malins (Saracens), Joe Marchant (Harlequins), Jonny May (Gloucester), Raffi Quirke (Sale), Adam Radwan (Newcastle), Harry Randall (Bristol), Dan Robson (Wasps,), Henry Slade (Exeter), Ollie Sleightholme (Northampton), Marcus Smith (Harlequins), Freddie Steward (Leicester), Manu Tuilagi (Sale), Anthony Watson (Bath), Ben Youngs (Leicester)