Worcester Warriors prop Matt Mullan has today been named in the England Saxons Elite Player squad by England Team Manager, Martin Johnson and Elite Rugby Director Rob Andrew.
Bromsgrove-born Mullan, who has played on 51 occasions for Warriors, is part of a 32-man squad set for international duty.
The 22-year-old prop, named Most Improved Player of the Year award at the 2008/09 end of season awards at Worcester Warriors, will now be aiming to make his Saxons debut after twice being denied last season.
A rearranged Guinness Premiership match prevented him from facing Portugal in January before a frozen pitch denied Mullan a game against Ireland 'A' in February.
"Martin Johnson rang me the other day to let me know that Matt Mullan had secured a place in the England Saxons squad and we are delighted for him," said Director of Rugby Mike Ruddock.
"It's great news for Matt and fantastic news for the club. It shows the club's ability to develop and produce players and bring them through to international recognition.
"I'm delighted for Matt as he works so hard at his game and has such a strong desire to improve. He has ambition and wants to eventually play for the senior England team one day. This is a great opportunity in the Saxons squad to show what he can do.
"Having said that, I've always told him to set his rugby goals high and not just be satisfied with this recognition so that he can carry on pushing now towards full England honours."
Martin Johnson said "Selection for the two squads has been very difficult because there is a greater strength in depth of players to choose from now than we had 12 months ago.
"There is strong competition for places within both of the squads but there will also be opportunities, as there were last year for movement between the Seniors and the Saxons and for players to come in from outside the 64 because of injury, retirement or suspension. Delon Armitage and Mark Cueto are good examples of the latter and Ugo Monye and Joe Worsley have earned Lions caps after being originally selected in the Saxons."
The England Senior Elite Player and Saxons squads will meet on Sunday August 9 for their pre-season training camp, which will run through to *Friday August 14.
ENGLAND SAXONS SQUAD
Forwards: Richard Blaze (Leicester Tigers), Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers), Alex Corbisiero (London Irish)
Nick Kennedy (London Irish), Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints), Matthew Mullan (Worcester Warriors), Tom Mercey (Saracens), Lewis Moody (Leicester Tigers), Luke Narraway (Gloucester Rugby), David Paice (London Irish), Chris Robshaw (Harlequins), Will Skinner (Harlequins), George Skivington (London Wasps), Dan Ward-Smith (London Wasps), Rob Webber (London Wasps), Nick Wood (Gloucester Rugby), Ben Woods (Leicester Tigers)
Backs: Nick Abendanon (Bath Rugby), Brad Barritt (Saracens), Danny Cipriani (London Wasps), Ben Foden (Northampton Saints), Shane Geraghty (Northampton Saints), Topsy Ojo (London Irish), Stephen Myler (Northampton Saints), Paul Sackey (London Wasps), Joe Simpson (London Wasps), David Strettle (Harlequins), Jordan Turner-Hall (Harlequins), Sam Vesty (Leicester Tigers), Dominic Waldouck (London Wasps), Richard Wigglesworth (Sale Sharks), Micky Young (Newcastle Falcons)
* England will be hosting an open training session for fans at Twickenham Stadium on Wednesday August 12 starting at 2pm. The session will form part of Twickenham Stadium's centenary celebrations in 2009/10. Please go to www.rfu.com/centenary for more details.
Premiership Rugby today announced an extension of their partnership with the UK's largest insurance company, Aviva, for a further three years. The contract extension, which starts in the 2014-15 season, will cover a golden era for club rugby in England and will include a period when the country will host a Rugby World Cup and when rugby union will finally rejoin the Olympic movement.
Not only are the great and the good of the Aviva Premiership Rugby strutting their stuff at Twickenham this Saturday - so are the new generation of rugby players, including Worcester RFC, courtesy of the Land Rover Premiership Rugby Cup.
Warrior Stuart Brooks will represent the club at Twickenham next weekend as he battles for the honour of carrying the coveted Aviva Premiership Rugby trophy onto the pitch ahead of the final between Leicester Tigers and Northampton Saints.