England's Six Nations prep underway

England's first Six Nations camp began overnight, with just over a month to go until the tournament begins.

Eddie Jones's men were hit with a handful of injuries after last weekend's Premiership rounds, but plenty of hopefuls will still have a chance to impress before the January 18 announcement of the Six Nations squad.

Charlie Ewels (hamstring), Piers Francis (concussion), Jonathan Joseph (dead leg), Jack Nowell (ankle) and Harry Williams (concussion) were all absent from the camp, while lock Courtney Lawes was already ruled out for personal reasons.

Giant London Irish wing Joe Cokanasiga and Bath's Henry Thomas have been called up as injury replacements.

England stars Maro Itoje and Billy Vunipola have been included in the squad, after lengthy injuries, in a boost to England's Six Nations hopes.

Jones said this two-day camp, in Brighton, was critical.

"This camp in Brighton is important for us to set the tone as a squad ahead of the Six Nations," he said.

"We will need to improve if we are to hunt down our opponents and beat them.

"This tournament will be exciting and challenging, as we know we will play against some very strong teams.

“Brighton will provide a great base to begin our preparations with players coming away with a clear plan for our opening match of the campaign against Italy.”

England has won the past two Six Nations title, losing just one match in the process, to Ireland in 2017.

England opens its Six Nations campaign on Sunday February 4 against Italy.