Jack Nowell has returned to Sandy Park from England duty with a hamstring injury that will rule him out for the next nine weeks.
The Exeter Chiefs winger missed the final Test of England’s autumn with Australia after sustaining the injury in training, allowing Joe Cokanasiga to show his promise again.
Nowell had been named in all three of head coach Eddie Jones’ squads in the wins against South Africa and Japan and the defeat to New Zealand.
The news deals a big blow to Chiefs director of rugby Rob Baxter who confirmed the 25-year-old is likely to miss out of the team’s remaining Heineken Champions Cup pool stage fixtures against Gloucester, Castres and Munster.
Nowell is certain to also be out for Exeter’s crunch clash against Saracens on December 22 in the Premiership.
The fixture will be the first meeting between the league’s two juggernauts, both currently unbeaten with eight wins out of eight matches, and could be dress rehearsal for June’s final at Twickenham.
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