MIKE BROWN believes he was not to blame for the row which cost him a World Cup spot.
The gutted England full-back feels he has been made a scapegoat by Eddie Jones after a training camp dust-up with Ben Te’o, which saw the centre also miss out.
3 England veteran Mike Brown feels he is the innocent victim after he was left out of their World Cup squadCredit: Getty Images – Getty
3 Ben Te’o was the culprit, according to England team-mate Mike Brown, after a row which cost both of them a World Cup placeCredit: Times Newspapers Ltd
A pal said: “Mike did nothing wrong and yet he has carried the can. It doesn’t seem fair.”
Harlequins ace Brown, 33, was desperate to feature in his second World Cup having forced his way back into the England reckoning.
But the 72-cap star saw his dream shattered when he was omitted from Jones’ 31-man squad on Monday because of his recent clash during a ‘bonding’ evening in Treviso, Italy.
Brown, who was not drinking on the night, maintains he was attacked by an out-of-control Te’o after telling the New Zealand-born centre to calm down when tempers were fraying.
Brown is adamant he was set upon by Te’o, 32, and did not retaliate.
And was devastated to be branded responsible by boss Jones and his coaching staff.
Being dubbed a "bad boy" has hurt Brown, who is believed to feel he was the innocent victim.
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Brown is thought to be reluctant to go public about the decision because he does not want to burn his bridges with boss Jones.
Elliot Daly and Anthony Watson are in the Red Rose squad.
And an injury to either ahead of next month’s showpiece could yet open the door for Brown’s return.