Rugby Union: Looking Goode for England hope

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Alex Goode declared himself fit for England’s RBS 6 Nations opener against Scotland after making a successful return in Saracens’ 19-11 LV= Cup victory over Cardiff Blues.

Goode was making his first appearance in five weeks since sustaining a shoulder injury and emerged from his 56-minute spell on the club’s new artificial pitch at Allianz Park unscathed.

A second-half tackle by wing Owen Williams resulted in the 24-year-old landing heavily on the problematic left shoulder, but he was unharmed during the incident.

“I feel really good. There was a bit of apprehension - you always go into a situation like that a bit unsure at times,” he said.

“But I’d done all the training, I’d tested the shoulder to the max and the physios had done a great job.

“I felt 100 per cent going into the game and the shoulder came through really well. I was very happy.

“I was a bit winded after getting smashed by their winger, but I managed to carry on all right and the shoulder showed no effects after the game. “It feels brilliant and I’m very confident going forward.”

England launch their Six Nations campaign at Twickenham on Saturday with Goode competing against Mike Brown of Harlequins and Northampton’s Ben Foden for the number 15 jersey.