Leicester Tigers centre Manu Tuilagi's chances of making an England comeback has taken a major blow as he is likely to miss the autumn internationals following a knee injury.
The 26-year-old suffered the blow during his club's recently concluded Aviva Premiership game against Bath and is expected to remain on the sidelines for 12 weeks.
Tuilagi has played just one Test for England in the last three years with his career being marred by series of injuries and disciplinary issues.
He was recently sent back from England's training camp along with Sale Sharks winger Denny Solomona for an alcohol related incident but England coach Eddie Jones recently stated that the incident is unlikely to cost him a place in the national squad.
Leicester said that Tuilagi's latest injury was a strained meniscus in his left knee.
"This is not the knee that Manu injured last season, and this is not a major injury in the context of what kept him out for the first half of this year," Leicester head coach Matt O'Connor told the club's official website.
"Manu has worked really hard with the medical and conditioning teams to come back from long-term injury and was starting to find his feet again on the pitch, but he's just been very unlucky with this one.
"It was an innocuous bump, a freak incident in the game.
"On closer inspection, there is some damage to the meniscus which needs to be addressed. We look forward to having him back at the end of his recovery period."
England are set to face Argentina, Australia, and Samoa in their autumn internationals that kicks-off on 11th November.