FRESH from his stellar contribution for England in the recent autumn internationals, Mark Wilson is enjoying some home comforts as he slots back into life as a Newcastle Falcon.

Wilson was voted England’s man of the series after playing the full 80 minutes in all four of their autumn tests, taking man of the match honours against South Africa, scoring his first test try against Japan and showing up well against both New Zealand and Australia.

“As enjoyable as the past month has been, it’s great to get back with the family, and it has been entertaining getting back into parenthood with two young kids at home,” said Wilson, who will return to club duty with Newcastle at Northampton this afternoon.

“My wife, Amy, says it’s probably more stressful having me back home, but all joking aside it’s fantastic because you do miss that family time when you’re away. Amy and the kids came down for the South Africa game which was great, and then Amy came down on her own for the Japan match, so they get very well looked after from that side of things.

“Hopefully, I’ve not come back any different to how I went away, I’ll let others be the judge of that, but needless to say the lads have been absolutely rinsing me all week at the club. I’ve had a lot of grief in the changing room and been brought right down to earth, but it’s fantastic to be here again and hopefully being able to make a contribution.”

Wilson now looks a certainty to be named in Eddie Jones’ squad for next autumn’s World Cup in Japan, and the Cumbrian has relished the opportunity to prove himself on the international stage.

“I loved every minute of it,” he said. “My goal when I set out was to be involved in the first game, and I’m very grateful for the opportunity. I’m pleased that I gave a decent account of myself and hopefully I can build on it, but I’m not getting carried away.

“Yeah, it’s nice to have people being complimentary about you, but you can’t let it go to your head. It’s all a learning curve regarding what’s test match rugby is all about, and it’s hopefully a starting point.

“After the South Africa game we then moved into the New Zealand test, and it’s added fuel to the fire in terms of knowing what we need to do to beat them. We came about as close as you can get, and I was stood there watching that TMO decision at the end thinking, ‘Oh my days, I wouldn’t want to be the bloke making this call’.

“Japan was great in terms of getting my first try, although we were under the cosh at half-time after a bit of a nightmare first half. When the moment came for my try in the second half I was just thinking, ‘Get this ball down as quickly as you can’, and in fairness George Ford had done all of the work for me, really.

“It was a bit of a settler just to get it out of the way, and then England v Australia is always a big game. To finish the series with probably our best half of rugby was very pleasing, and it showed that we can deliver what we had been practicing. We know we’re nowhere near where we can be, but it was good to finish on a high like that and move back into the Falcons stuff.”

Newcastle travel to Northampton looking to build on last Friday’s 16-8 home win over Bath and lift themselves off the foot of the Gallagher Premiership table.

“Hopefully, it’s just the start, and I feel very blessed to have had the opportunities I’ve had over the autumn, but it’s all about the Falcons now and just doing my best for the club,” said Wilson. “It’s been weird these last few weeks, actually, because I’ve just been like any other Falcons fan, following the games on the internet, on the radio and picking up the live streams in my hotel room when I can.

“Like every Falcons fan, I was jumping around the hotel room when we scored a try or won a game, and then gutted for the lads when we didn’t.

“As soon as I landed back on Sunday night I was just excited about getting back among the lads and working with the team again.

“The Gallagher Premiership doesn’t get any easier and Franklin’s Gardens is a tough place to go, but we’ve won our last couple there. The boys are really up for the game and excited to show what we’re about, and it’s been good to slot back into that.

“We’ve got some great leaders here who are really motivated and capable with regards to driving the club forward, and it’s such a competitive league. You can’t afford an off-week because teams will make you pay, but we’ve got a great group of lads here and we’re capable of hurting teams.”