Maro Itoje and Joel Chessum Have a Clear Message for Steve Borthwick When it Comes to Player Selection

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Maro Itoje and Joel Chessum Have a Clear Message for Steve Borthwick When it Comes to Player Selection
Steve Borthwick (Credits: The Independent)

Maro Itoje and Ollie Chessum, who are big and important players in the England rugby team, have told their coach, Steve Borthwick, that they do not want to take a break and sit out of the game against Chile.

Borthwick might decide to change many players in the starting lineup for this game because Chile is not considered a strong team. This gives a chance for some of the other players to get some rest. But Itoje and Chessum want to keep playing and not take a break.

Itoje and Chessum, who have been playing together in the last three important games, with the wins against Argentina and Japan, might get a break this weekend. This is because there are more difficult and challenging games coming up in the future. However, Itoje really wants to keep playing and be in the starting lineup, even though Chile is not ranked very high in the world rankings.

Maro Itoje and Joel Chessum Have a Clear Message for Steve Borthwick When it Comes to Player Selection
Maro Itoje (Credits: Sky Sports)

“I always want to play. I want to be picked to be on the team and play for England. If there is a chance to play, I am eager to be part of it,” Itoje explained. “You should not assume you will have these opportunities forever. You never can tell when it might be the last time you play for England. I want to earn as many caps as I can, so I really want to be on the field.

“Steve has big plans and needs to look after the whole team, not just individuals. He is the final decision maker. ”

The challenge for Borthwick will be to ensure that key personnel are put to the test in the lead-up to the quarter-finals, which England almost reached by defeating the Pumas and Brave Blossoms.

However, with each team taking a rest week at various stages of the World Cup, the next assignment for Chile will be the final group game against Samoa on October 7. Itoje could, therefore, be out of action for three weeks if he is left out of Borthwick’s selected squad on Thursday.

If I’m Not Playing, I’ll Be Getting Flogged

“Three weeks off is neither here nor there. When we play, it’s great,” Itoje said.

“When I am not playing, I train more. The players who weren’t in the team were whipped, which gave me enough motivation to play,” Itoje said. “If you do not play, you will get whipped. I do not want to get whipped, and I’d rather play!”

If I’m Not Playing, I’ll Be Getting Flogged
Ollie Chessum (Credits: The Independent)

Chesham, who is Itoje’s partner in England’s first engine room, also wants to keep his place. However, they are more likely to use Lester Lock, who is still recovering from a serious ankle injury.

“I want to be on the team and play whenever I can,” Chessum said. “I have not had many chances to play rugby in the last six months, so I want to keep playing. But it is not my decision; it is up to the coaches. So, I will give my best in training this week, and they will decide who gets to play.”

Chile will possibly face a tough match in Lille on Saturday. However, teams like Portugal and Uruguay have shown in this World Cup that smaller teams can surprise bigger ones, as they did with Wales and France. The last major anger in the tournament was when Japan defeated Ireland four years ago, and Chessum did not want England to be the next big team to lose.

“If you sleepwalk into a game or anything during this World Cup, you will be caught and exposed,” he said.

“Last week’s games showed that there were no big differences between the teams. The second-tier countries put some of their best teams straight into the game. “I will do my best in training and work in preparation for the match against Chile.”


By Collins Abia

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