The hottest rumour currently being aired on rugby union's grapevine would have been scarcely believable three months ago - Andy Farrell starting for England against Scotland on February 3.
But what started with a whisper about Farrell is now increasing in volume on a daily basis.
The word is he will wear England's number 12 shirt when Scotland arrive at Twickenham for both countries' RBS 6 Nations Championship opener.
It is also believed new England head coach Brian Ashton will select experienced midfield cover on the bench in the evergreen, enthusiastic presence of 2003 England World Cup winner Mike Catt, but Farrell appears on course for centre stage.
He has started five of Saracens' last seven Premiership games, in addition to being involved in their European Challenge Cup and EDF Energy Cup campaigns, and the rumour mill suggests Ashton will be at Vicarage Road on Sunday for Saracens' European appointment with Narbonne.
In the meantime, cue Saracens head coach Alan Gaffney.
'When 'Faz' and I sat down, irrespective of where I thought his best position was in the game, there was no doubt he was going to achieve for England playing at 12,' he said.
'We have just zeroed in on that - it is what we are working towards, along with other coaches.
'I have been amazed at the strides he has made.'
There are fewer more astute judges in the Premiership than Gaffney, who is slowly transforming Saracens from a group of under-achievers into genuine league title play-off material.
With Farrell's former GB and Wigan colleague Jason Robinson also vying for recognition against Scotland, the Ashton regime would appear to be guaranteed the highest-profile build-up to any England game since they won the 2003 World Cup.
Other issues to be addressed include a possible Test return for Gloucester centre Mike Tindall, the confirmation of Newcastle prospect Toby Flood at fly-half, whether or not Tindall's fellow World Cup hero Steve Thompson will start at hooker, and if both uncapped back-row tyros Tom Rees and Dan Ward-Smith get their chance in the same game.
And perhaps, most tellingly of all, whether or not Robinson's captain Martin Corry will even secure a place in the England match-day 22.
As head coach Stuart Lancaster polishes the axe he will soon wield over his World Cup training squad, Exeter Chiefs coach Rob Baxter has backed Jack Nowell, Henry Slade and Luke Cowan-Dickie to be given a stay of execution.
Italy Under-20s held off a late Samoa blitz to retain their place in the World Rugby U20 Championship on Saturday and head coach Alessandro Troncon believes the experience will have served as a valuable lesson for his young troops.