Mako Vunipola will be available for England’s opening Six Nations match against Italy, despite receiving a four match ban in the English Premiership. The prop was given a red card for a tackle on Bryan Byrne, in Saracens’ 37-19 win against Newcastle Falcons. The Rugby Football Union confirmed Vunipola’s suspension will affect both the Premiership and Champions Cup, so he will be available for England’s first match against Italy.
As for France’s Antoine Dupont, he has joined the seven-a-side squad in preparation for upcoming sevens tournaments in Vancouver and Los Angeles, meaning he will miss the 2023 Six Nations to focus on Olympic sevens events. He hopes to overcome Fiji’s dominance in sevens and win gold at the Paris Olympics.
In other rugby news, the England men’s team has ended a 20-year partnership with the Rugby Players Association. This decision reflects player dissatisfaction and plans for a new agency to represent the England men. Additionally, the Western Force Super W has signed Black Ferns Pia Tapsell and Sheree Hume, bolstering their squad ahead of the upcoming Super W season.