Six Nations: England set to be without four more players v Wales

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Six Nations: England injuries not troubling Stuart Lancaster
Six Nations 2015
Dates: 6 February - 21 March 2013. Coverage: Watch the entire tournament across BBC TV, radio and online. The tournament kicks off with Wales v England at the Millennium Stadium on Friday 6 February at 20:00 GMT, live on BBC One from 19:30 GMT, plus HD, Red Button, Radio 5 live, BBC Radio Wales, Radio Cymru, S4C online, mobile, the BBC Sport app and Connected TV.

England's injury problems have deepened with four more players likely to miss the Six Nations opener against Wales.

Lock Geoff Parling and centre Brad Barritt are set to be out for "a couple of weeks" but have not yet been ruled out of the second game against Italy.

Centre Kyle Eastmond and flanker Tom Wood are also unable to train and set to miss the Wales game on 6 February.

Coach Stuart Lancaster is already without five players including fly-half Owen Farrell for the entire tournament.

The Saracens 10 joins number eight Ben Morgan, second rows Joe Launchbury and Ed Slater, and full-back Ben Foden on the long-term injury list.

Centre Manu Tuilagi, prop Dan Cole and lock Courtney Lawes will also miss the early part of the tournament.

Parling (knee), Barritt (knee), Eastmond (shoulder) and Wood (ankle) were all injured on club duty during last weekend's final round of European Champions Cup pool games.

Lancaster told BBC Radio 5 live: "With Geoff, the original prognosis was not that good and although he will struggle for the Wales game, we've not ruled him out of pushing his case for the Italy game.

"Brad is a similar prognosis. He is unlikely to make the Wales game but we are hopeful he will train and put his name in the hat for Italy.

England's injury list
Ben Foden (knee - out for season), Manu Tuilagi (groin - could return next month), Kyle Eastmond (shoulder - will miss first Six Nations match), Brad Barritt (knee - will miss first Six Nations match), Owen Farrell (knee - out for whole Six Nations), Dan Cole (ankle - could return in next two weeks), Joe Launchbury (neck - could be fit by April), Courtney Lawes (ankle - could return mid-late February), Geoff Parling (knee - will miss opening Six Nations match), Ed Slater (knee - could be fit by April), Tom Wood (ankle - will miss first Six Nations match), Ben Morgan (leg - out for season)

"Kyle is still being assessed and we're not sure how long he will be, but the clock is definitely ticking for the Wales game.

"As for Tom, he will struggle to make the Cardiff game and we'll have to wait for it to settle down and get a diagnosis and an update on Friday."

Centre Luther Burrell also suffered concussion in Northampton's defeat by Racing Metro, but should be fit to face Wales.

Lancaster added: "We hope he will be able to train at the weekend as he continues to tick all the boxes on his return."

It means England captain Chris Robshaw will be missing a number of key lieutenants, with Wood effectively his vice-captain, Parling a line-out leader and Barritt leading the defence.

"They've all been key, they've all been huge influences on England and myself as well, big characters to have around," Robshaw said. "Unfortunately they won't be there and it's up to other guys to really step up now."

Despite the glut of injuries, Lancaster is confident England will be competitive in Cardiff.

He said: "We certainly don't lie awake at night worrying about the injuries we've got and we're confident in the squad we've got."

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