Aviva Premiership
Lawes tipped to be fit for season opener
ESPN Staff
July 20, 2012
Courtney Lawes pops a pass during England training session, Carisbrook,  Dunedin, New Zealand, September 8, 2011
Northampton will hope Courtney Lawes is fit for the start of the new season © Getty Images
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Northampton Saints performance director Nick Johnston claims that England lock Courtney Lawes should be fit for the start of next season despite previous fears suggesting he may be forced to spend a spell on the sidelines.

Lawes has suffered an elbow injury which was rumoured to be severe enough to keep him out of action for their season opener against Gloucester on September 1.

With the lock missing huge parts of last season due to a knee and then a shin injury, Lawes will have hoped to start the new season fit and firing as he looks to break back into the England side after making just one substitute appearance under Stuart Lancaster.

"He's rehabbing well," Johnston told the Northampton Chronicle & Echo. "He's going well and we hope to have him fit for the start of the season. He has had a big pre-season so we're not to worry about that. Courtney physically is in very good shape, in terms of being physically fit, his running fitness.

"He's progressing well and our plan was never to rush Courtney back because of the nature of his original injury. We're trying to build him up for the start of the season. We've spent a lot of time getting him to where he is and we will continue to do that with Courtney.

"He's going well at the moment, he's been good to have around, he's been mixing protein shakes, he's been doing his fitness early with the guys in the morning and he's been a key team member here because he's a really good lad."

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