England flanker Brad Shields will be sidelined for four to six weeks after damaging a ligament in his foot at a training camp in Italy last week, assistant coach John Mitchell said on Tuesday.
Shields, 28, was replaced by Harlequins' Alex Dombrandt at the training camp and the Wasps back-row forward's recovery period casts doubts over participation in England's warm-up matches before the World Cup in Japan in September.
Head coach Eddie Jones is set to name his final 31-man squad on Aug. 12 – a day after a warm-up game against Wales at Twickenham – and Mitchell said the Australian coach would take the final call.
"Brad has got a tear in the lower foot," Mitchell told reporters. "It's always a little bit niggly, but it's four to six weeks for him. But we will continue to appraise his recovery and see where he gets to.
"Obviously we've got a deadline and that's important, but Eddie will decide on who's right and who's not right. There's plenty of time to go and there are no major concerns."