Leicester Tigers star Ben Youngs will pull out all the stops for England opener
Scrum-half Ben Youngs says he will "hit the ground running" this week in his attempt to make the England squad for their opening autumn international against Fiji on Saturday.
The 23-year-old played a full 80 minutes for Leicester Tigers in their 16-12 derby win against Northampton Saints at the weekend.
He had been released back to his club to prove his fitness after a hamstring strain.
Although he had to deal with a frustratingly slow ball all afternoon against Saints, Youngs was satisfied with his performance and will be doing all he can to make Stuart Lancaster's 23-man squad having re-joined the England set-up.
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"It wasn't the quickest game to play in, but it was nice to be playing again after missing the match at Gloucester," he said.
"It was frustrating to play three games (on comeback from shoulder surgery) and then get a really annoying niggle.
"But my hamstring felt good and, fingers crossed, that should be the end of it.
"I wanted to play against Saints and Stuart (Lancaster) wanted me to play, too. I want to play every week, and playing for Leicester in a local derby is very exciting.
"I have played four games now this season. I will hit the ground running this week and see where I am at with England.
"I will do whatever is best for the team, whether that means starting, being on the bench or not being involved. Of course, I want to be involved all of the time, but it is Stuart's decision."
Leicester are in third place in the Aviva Premiership table following Saturday's sixth consecutive win against Saints.
Although the game failed to live up to its usual expectations, Youngs said the truncated build-up due to international call-ups did not help.
"We have been so lucky to have so many great games in the last three years between us and Saints, we were always going to get one that didn't live up to expectation," he said.
"It was a shame that the fixture fell at a time when not everyone was available. Steve Mafi was away with Tonga most of the week, Martin Castrogiovanni was away with Italy, and the England boys were away, so we only had an hour's training session to get ready for one of the biggest games of the season. That showed in the first half.
"It was frustrating. I don't know how long we spent in their 22 but we just couldn't convert. We let them off the hook a little bit, but we will take the win."
Tigers begin the defence of their LV= Cup title against Saracens at Bedford's Goldington Road ground on Friday.