After a breakthrough campaign in club colours for Leicester Tigers in the Premiership last season, full-back Freddie Steward announced himself to the rugby world in the Autumn Nations Series.
Now heading into his first Guinness Six Nations, he is emerging as one of the most exciting players to watch.
At 6ft 5ins, the 21-year-old is not just a physical presence but is excellent in the air and looks to be England’s most dependable option at full-back since Mike Brown.
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But he offers so much more than that. An excellent kicking option with pace and power, he seems to have an all-round game that most outside backs can only dream of.
Add his natural read of the game and confidence from playing at one of the form teams in Europe this season and that is a recipe for a truly world class talent.
The journey so far
Steward made his debut for Leicester Tigers in 2019 and has already amassed 47 appearances in the famous green, red and white jersey.
Tigers were a struggling side when he made his debut, but they have risen from that 11th-place finish in 2019-20 to being comfortably top of the Premiership table at the halfway point of this season, with Steward quickly becoming a fan favourite at Welford Road.
That form at a resurgent Tigers side last season saw Steward included in Eddie Jones’ England squad for the two-Test summer series against USA and Canada.
He would start both games and while not standing out in the same way as Marcus Smith, Jamie Blamire or Adam Radwan, he went error-free and earned Jones’ trust.
Fast forward a few months and Tigers are unbeaten in all competitions and he finds himself back at full-back in front of a packed-out Twickenham for the first time against Tonga before his first clash with Australia a week later.
That proved to be the day the rugby world stood up and took notice as Steward scored his first England try and took the player of the match award in the process, not bad for a then 20-year-old winning only his fourth cap.
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A week after that though, world champions South Africa came to town in what would be his greatest test yet.
It was an examination that was passed with flying colours as Steward picked up consecutive player of the match awards in another try-scoring appearance at Twickenham.
What is next?
England open their Guinness Six Nations campaign with a daunting trip to BT Murrayfield on the opening weekend in search of revenge after defeat at Twickenham 12 months ago.
Another trip follows that as England head to Rome to take on Italy, before returning home for the visit of Wales.
Ireland at Twickenham follows that before a mouth-watering tie with France on the final day at the Stade de France.
Steward seems destined to start at full-back for that clash at BT Murrayfield, in what would be his first England appearance away from Twickenham.
He has proven he can do it against the very best, but those visits to Scotland and France will be an altogether different challenge.
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Should he feature in all five matches, he will already have reached double figure England caps at the age of 21.
But in one of the most open Championships to date, this will certainly be another step up for Steward.
England struggled a year ago, finishing fifth, and they will be looking to take inspiration from Tigers and re-claim the title they last won two years ago, should they do so, Steward will be key.