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Ton-up Ben is a credit to the #TigersFamily

If a cricketer’s nerves jangle when they’re stuck in the nervous 90s for any length of time at the crease, you wonder how they’d cope being stranded there for nearly nine months.

That is the fate of Ben Youngs who finally nudges into three figures in Rome on Saturday.

Eddie Jones confirmed on Thursday that Ben would earn his 100th Test cap for England – to go with two for the Lions – against Italy in the final round of the 2020 Six Nations and the last fixture of the year-long season - after earning his 99th when Covid first struck Europe back in February.

Youngs will lead out the team, though he will have little time to reflect on the occasion as the Autumn Nations Cup is next up just two weeks further down the line.

After a decade of national service, he becomes only the second Englishman to reach a century of caps after prop Jason Leonard and is within reach of his fourth Six Nations title.

It is hard to even comprehend what it takes to play 100 times for a national team, even in an era with a packed international calendar, and the landmark is a tribute to commitment and adaptability as much as ability.,

Coaches have come and gone, as have so many competitors for the shirt, but Ben is still there.

His feat is a tremendous tribute to his rugby ability as well as a credit to his family and, of course, the Tigers.

A Premiership title winner before his 18th birthday, he is still a youthful 31, or as youthful as you can be with 350-plus first-class games on the clock, every single one of them at the top-end of the game.

But Ben has already said he’s not content to stop there, and Eddie Jones has challenged him to carry on.

The Tig enjoyed reflecting on Ben’s progress to his 250th Tigers appearance recently and will cheer as loudly as anyone when he raises his bat to acknowledge a memorable ton this weekend.