Injured Slade a doubt for England's Six Nations start

FILE PHOTO: Rugby Union - Rugby World Cup - England v New Zealand - England News conferences & training - International Stadium Yokohama, Yokohama, Japan - October 25, 2019 England's Henry Slade during training REUTERS/Matthew Childs

(Reuters) - England centre Henry Slade is a doubt for the start of the Six Nations in February after his club Exeter said he faces six to eight weeks on the sidelines due to a small ankle fracture.

The 26-year-old sustained the injury in the Premiership earlier this month and missed Exeter’s 14-7 home victory over Saracens on Sunday.

Slade has 27 caps for England, who begin their Six Nations campaign against France in Paris on Feb. 2.

"Henry has a small fracture to his ankle around the site of the plate he had put in a couple of seasons ago when he fractured it at Wasps," Exeter's Director of Rugby Rob Baxter told the club's website here.

“The prognosis of anything like that is six to eight weeks of healing time. There’s no information at this stage that says it will be quicker or slower than six to eight weeks.

“It’s not for me to say for which game exactly he’ll be back because things can shorten up considerably towards the end of rehab time or they can relapse at the end, so it’s impossible for me to say.”

Reporting by Simon Jennings in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford