Few players score a hat-trick of tries on their RWC debut but Jack Nowell did just that when helping England to a 60-3 win over Uruguay at the Manchester City Stadium in October 2015. It was the sixth instance that an England team member had bagged three or more tries in the history of the tournament. He followed Mike Harrison (1987), Josh Lewsey (2003), Chris Ashton and Mark Cueto (2011) and Nick Easter, who also achieved the feat against Uruguay (2015).
Jack took his Test try total to eight in 11 games in the 15-9 over Scotland at Murrayfield February 2016 – he had also crossed their line at Twickenham in 2015. He also produced a breathtaking and try-saving tackle on Ireland’s Robbie Henshaw at the corner in the third RBS 6 Nations match in 2016, so illustrating his tenacity and gritty qualities reflected in his ability to make the hard yards under extreme pressure.
His ninth international try at Brisbane in June last year took England to a match record for points against Australia in 45 meetings of the countries, dating back to 1909. Owen Farrell’s conversion secured a final score of 39-28 before that was topped with a 44-40 victory in Sydney. He missed the start of last season after having surgery on a thumb injury and then suffered a tear in his quad in October. That ruled him out of the four-match Old Mutual Wealth Series. An eye-catching performance off the bench against Italy in February this year brought him two tries and he was narrowly denied a third because of obstruction. His third game for the British & Irish Lions in New Zealand this June also produced two tries during an eye-catching performance against the Chiefs at Hamilton. A cameo performance spanning six-minutes followed on his Lions Test debut at Wellington while Anthony Watson was undergoing a head injury assessment. He also played off the bench in the final eight minutes of the third match at Eden Park.
As the LV= Breakthrough Player for 2012-13, Jack had already achieved much in his burgeoning career before scoring four tries in his first eight Test matches. They featured two touchdowns in the final game of the 2015 RBS 6 Nations Championship against France and he made more clean breaks (nine) than any other player in the tournament, one more than England teammate George Ford and Liam Williams, of Wales.
Jack had been included in the Saxons squad for the first time in August 2013 and five months later joined England’s Championship squad. On his Test debut against France in Paris, he made 87 metres, the most by an England player in that game and scored his maiden try against Italy in Rome.
He was sidelined for much of 2014 while recovering from a shoulder injury and undergoing knee surgery during that summer. He had been chosen for the LV= award after a public vote from a shortlist of ten nominees. Jack was presented with the accolade by Rob Hunter, then the England U20 head coach and said: “It is a huge honour and I have been really fortunate with all the coaching I have had throughout my career. I should like to thank all the people who have helped me to get to this stage.”
Rob added: “All the players shortlisted are outstanding talents but Jack is a deserved winner. He has been a standout performer in the England age grade sides." Jack scored two tries against Italy and one against Wales in his three U20 games in 2012-13, helped his team to lift the RBS 6 Nations Championship title and in June 2013 was a try-scorer when England beat Wales 23-15 at Vannes and took the World Rugby Junior World Championship crown for the first time.
Being a try-scoring man of the match on his England U18 debut against Ireland at Donnybrook in December 2010 swiftly illustrated his talents. Jack also bagged a try from full back on his second appearance against Italy at Sale in February 2011 and two in the Wales match at Auch two months later. His first was after only a minute and his second helped England to rally in exhilarating style from 27-10 adrift to achieve a 38-34 victory.
Truro-born Jack studied at the college there and took a BTEC in Sport Performance and Excellence. He also did the AASE (Advanced Apprenticeship in Sporting Excellence) programme designed to help everyone in aspects of being a semi/professional rugby player.
A member of Exeter Chiefs Senior Academy, he has played for Redruth and deep into 2010-11 had started at full back in every match for which he had been fit and available. Jack was also a member of the Chiefs squad for the JP Morgan Asset Management Premiership Sevens round at Northampton in July 2010 and the finals at Bath the following month. He had loan spells with Cornish Pirates and Plymouth and played for Albion in the 2011 Middlesex Sevens at Twickenham.
Jack was educated at Newlyn School and Mount’s Bay School in Penzance and first played when six at Penzance-Newlyn RFC, where his mentors were Nicky Brooks and Peter Lugg. Marek Churcher, Josh Lords, Steve Larkin and Ian Boase developed his game at Truro College and Robin Cowling, Ricky Pellow, Rob Gibson, Rob Baxter and Ali Hepher are his key helpers at Exeter. Jack has scored 20 tries, including three against Harlequins at Twickenham Stoop in May 2016, in his first 56 Premiership matches for the Chiefs.
England U18 coaches John Fletcher, Peter Walton and Ian Peel also oversaw his development, which encompassed six tries in seven matches for the side. They included one in his final game at that level when his team beat Australia Schools 46-19 at Ignatius College, Sydney in August 2011. He became a member of the England U20 squad for 2011-12 but suffered a long-term knee injury while playing for his club in the Amlin Cup win over Cavalieri Prato in January 2012.
His representative honours include Cornwall U15-U18, South West U18 and England U17 Academies. Jack toured Italy with Penzance-Newlyn and in 2011 went to South Africa with Truro College, but his highlight before his England U18 debut was going to Japan with his college for the Sanix World Championship.
55 points – 11T
2014 F, S, I, W, It 2015 I, S, F, F World Cup - U 2016 S, It, I, W, F, A(1R,2,3) 2017 F(R), W, It(R), S, I(R)
Lions: 2017 NZ(2R,3R)
Last updated: 13 July 2017