Two 2009 British & Irish Lions Test forwards put themselves in line for a possible international recall in the final two rounds of the RBS 6 Nations with their club performances at the weekend.
England flanker Tom Croft got a second game under his belt in his return after a three month lay-off with a shoulder injury in Leicester Tigers’ 1-14 home defeat to Saracens, while Wales tight head prop Adam Jones came off the bench in the Ospreys’ victory over Glasgow.
Jones had spent six weeks on the sidelines with an elbow injury before his second half return in the bonus points victory that moved his side into second place in the Magners League.
Both players were lined-up to start for their countries at the beginning of the Championship, but now they have proved their match fitness – Croft also played against Sale Sharks the previous weekend – they could come into contention for an international return over the next few weeks.
Croft’s return to the back row at Welford Road didn’t end happily as the Aviva Premiership leaders lost their first home game in two-and-a-half-years.
“The shoulder is fine but, in terms of fitness, I’m only at 80 per cent of where I want to be. I’m still trying to recapture the level I was at before the injury,” said Croft.
“England are going well and the players who’ve got the shirt deserve it, so I’ll have to bust a gut to try to get it back. My objective is to get a starting spot at Leicester and get some form back."
“England have kept in touch with my recovery, but playing hasn't come into it. It's great to play for your country, but my main priority is playing for Leicester.”