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NIK SIMON’S AUTUMN REPORT: Freddie Steward is top of the class after breakthrough performances

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Freddie Steward is top of the class, Courtney Lawes has taken his game to a new level and England flourished without Owen Farrell: AUTUMN REPORT CARDS

  • England had a fine autumn, winning all the of their international matches
  • They beat Tonga, Australia and South Africa in the space of three weeks
  • Sportsmail’s Nik Simon rates the performance of each member of the squad 











England finished off a strong autumn with a thrilling victory over South Africa on Saturday.

Eddie Jones‘ men won all three of their internationals this month, previously beating Tonga and Australia.

Nik Simon rates the performances of each member of the squad…  

Freddie Steward was the standout performer for England in their autumn internationals

Freddie Steward was the standout performer for England in their autumn internationals

FRONT ROW

Jamie Blamire A

Try-scoring hooker enhanced his reputation against Bomb Squad. Needs to nail starting shirt at Newcastle.

Trevor Davison B

Opportunities were few but showed his versatility by switching from tighthead to loosehead.

Nic Dolly C

A remarkable rise from Coventry but Springboks cameo did not go to plan with two missed lineouts.

Ellis Genge B

Top of the loosehead pecking order. Frustrated at missing two games with Covid.

Joe Marler B 

Strongest scrummager seems to have settled for a role from the bench.

Kyle Sinckler B-

Few real challengers for his No 3 jersey. Needs to iron out indiscipline.

Kyle Sinckler had a solid month but did have some issues with his discipline at times

Kyle Sinckler had a solid month but did have some issues with his discipline at times 

Will Stuart C

Most notable moment was a yellow card against the Boks.

Jamie George B 

Played like a man with a point to prove and showed that he deserves a place in the squad.

Bevan Rodd B+

Drafted in as cover and showed no fear against Australia and South Africa.

LOCKS

Charlie Ewels C

Yet to make a real impact and will face competition from Joe Launchbury.

Jonny Hill B

Grown in prominence since Lions tour and brings raw strength to an arm wrestle.

Maro Itoje B

Sets the energy levels in the pack but backs stole the spotlight.

BACK ROW

Tom Curry B

Gets his head over the ball but his best games have come at flanker rather than No 8.

Alex Dombrandt B

Eddie Jones seems unconvinced by his credentials yet showed glimpses of his silky handling.

Sam Underhill C

Slipped off tackles and faces long-term competition from Jack Willis.

Sam Underhill wasn't particularly impressive and could face competition in the future

Sam Underhill wasn’t particularly impressive and could face competition in the future

Courtney Lawes A

Taken game to another level with neat offloads and captained the team with distinction.

Sam Simmonds B+

Raw speed has offered a point of difference, with key interventions in attack and defence. 

HALF BACKS

Alex Mitchell B

Helped turn the screw in his substitute cameo against Tonga with a late try.

Raffi Quirke A-

Cut from a similar cloth to Danny Care and showed his speed to score against Boks.

Ben Youngs B-

Solid option but some kicks lacked accuracy and Quirke looks the long-term successor.

Marcus Smith A

New poster boy is so assured at Test level and now needs to work out best combinations.

Marcus Smith (left) had some breakthrough performances and looked extremely assured

Marcus Smith (left) had some breakthrough performances and looked extremely assured

George Furbank B

Versatility to cover No 10 is an asset but seems destined to become a utility player.

CENTRES

Mark Atkinson B-

Experienced head in midfield will be frustrated at his lack of game time.

Manu Tuilagi B+

England are at their best when Tuilagi is at full power but they cannot rely on him being injury-free.

Owen Farrell B-

Missed two out of three Tests and England flourished in his absence — so doubts remain.

Owen Farrell only played one match due to injury and there are doubts going forward

Owen Farrell only played one match due to injury and there are doubts going forward

Henry Slade A

Classy operator in midfield and his midfield partnership with Smith shows signs of promise.

BACK THREE

Jonny May B-

Looked vulnerable in defence against the Boks and had a limited impact against Australia.

Freddie Steward A+

The breakthrough star. So assured under the high ball to finally solve full-back woes.

Max Malins A

Offers silky skills like Elliot Daly but also showed defensive grit when put under pressure.

Adam Radwan B+

Unlucky not to get more opportunities after his electrifying runs against Tonga.

Joe Marchant B+

Links up brilliantly with Smith and has the energy to pop up all over the field.

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