The RFU have confirmed that England and Sale Sharks winger Chris Ashton has withdrawn from the World Cup training squad due to family reasons.
A 28-man squad have convened at Pennyhill Park today for a training camp with another get together set to take place at Lensbury between June 30 and July 4.
However, Ashton will not be a part of either camp, the player confirmed today in a statement.
“When I returned from Toulon last season it was for two reasons; firstly for my family and secondly to try and realise the dream of playing for England again,” the 44-times capped England international said.
“Pulling on the white shirt is always special and I’m grateful to Eddie for giving me the opportunity to have done so again.
“My wife, Melissa, is pregnant with our second child and I don’t feel it is right for me to commit to being away in camp at this stage.
“In the meantime, I wish Owen and the boys all the very best with their preparation over the coming months.”
It remains to be seen whether Ashton will be in Eddie Jones’ plans for further World Cup preparations throughout the summer.