Injury blow for Norfolk rugby star Tom Youngs
- Credit: PA
Norfolk rugby star Tom Youngs will miss England's autumn internationals after being ruled out of action for three months with a shoulder injury.
The 27-year-old Aylsham ace was injured in Leicester Tigers shock 45-0 Aviva Premiership drubbing at Bath on Saturday.
The former Holt and North Walsham junior player will now be sidelined for England's four-Test autumn series, when the Red Rose face New Zealand, Samoa, South Africa and Australia.
'Tom Youngs has popped his AC joint and had surgery on that,' Tigers director of rugby Richard Cockerill told the Leicester Mercury. 'He is probably going to be out for three months.'
Youngs missed England's summer tour to New Zealand with coach Stuart Lancaster's blessing, to look after his ill wife.
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The Leicester front-rower started the new campaign targeting extended club form for a quick return to international action, but this latest setback has ended those hopes.
Leicester have already lost club captain Ed Slater for the season after the lock was forced to undergo knee surgery.
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Long-term absentee Tom Croft has returned to action, however, with Geoff Parling fit again after shoulder problems too.
The injury comes as a blow to Youngs' hopes to cement his place in England's squad for the 2015 Rugby World Cup on home soil.
He has been in a running battle with Northampton skipper Dylan Hartley for the number two shirt in recent years, winning the Premiership Player of the Year in 2013 having bulked up to convert from centre to hooker.
So far he has been capped 17 times at senior level by England, following in the footsteps of his father Nick, who was capped six times, and younger brother Ben, who has so far been capped 38 times.
Scrum-half Ben, 25, has captained Leicester so far this season following the injury to Ed Slater.