England’s Lewis Ludlow handed four-game ban for knee strike in Canada win

  • Flanker was sent to sin-bin for kneeing an opponent’s head
  • Ludlow sees six-match ban reduced after admitting foul play

England flanker Lewis Ludlow has been suspended for four matches for striking with the knee in Saturday’s 70-14 victory over Canada.

Ludlow, who was captaining the team for a second successive match, struck the head of Canada front row Jake Ilnicki 30 minutes into the game at Twickenham.

Related: Marcus Smith leads England’s 70-point rout of Canada and earns Lions call

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Eddie Jones’ new-look England? First let’s see if this team survive the summer | Gerard Meagher

The head coach may crave revolution before the 2023 World Cup but as it stands he is in a strange halfway house

It is unclear whether Eddie Jones wants to change the world but he is looking for a new England. He has given his squad that label this summer, repeatedly urging those for whom the international stage is new to seize their opportunity, to make the jersey their own, to ensure the senior players away with the British & Irish Lions, or given a few extra weeks off, have a fight on their hands next season.

Sixteen new caps and a new-look, albeit temporary, coaching staff certainly suggest change is in the air but it has been instructive to hear Jones try to keep a lid on things after high-scoring victories against significantly inferior opposition. Given their limited buildup, the USA really had no right to score four tries and though there was considerably more cohesion in the 10-try thrashing of Canada, they are at their lowest ebb for quite some time. “The big thing for us now is how many of these players are prepared to work really hard to be the best, the master craftsmen of their position,” said Jones. “It would be premature to say we’ve got outstanding depth after two wins over the USA and Canada though.”

Related: Lions tour hits new snag with Siya Kolisi among six Springboks to test positive

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Marcus Smith leads England’s 70-point rout of Canada and earns Lions call

  • England 70-14 Canada
  • Jamie Blamire and Adam Radwan grab hat-tricks

Marcus Smith’s remarkable season continues apace with the fly-half earning a surprise call-up to the British & Irish Lions squad, just a week after making his England debut. Smith scored 18 points in England’s thumping 10-try win over Canada before he was replaced 15 minutes from the end and duly informed of his call to South Africa, with Warren Gatland concerned over Finn Russell’s achilles injury.

Smith was left “shaking” by the news and had no idea until he was told by members of the England management when he came off the pitch. Eddie Jones had found out on Friday night but hoped to keep it from Smith until after the match. The Lions announced his call-up early in the second half, however, making for a surreal situation in which members of the crowd were doing their best to break the news to him.

Related: Sharks v British & Irish Lions: tour match – live!

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