Rugby Union

Danny Cipriani maintains England World Cup ambition

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Sale Sharks fly-half Danny Cipriani still maintains his desire to play for England ahead of next year's World Cup after missing out on the Autumn internationals at Twickenham.

After a promising start to his career, breaking through the ranks with the London Wasps and forcing his way into the England setup, he was tipped by many to follow in the footsteps of Jonny Wilkinson. However, injuries played their part in his fall from reckoning on the big stage.

Fly half rivals

He returned this summer in New Zealand after an impressive season with the Sharks, but Owen Farrell, Stephen Myler and George Ford pipped the London-born player into the squad last month.

Cipriani understandably admits he was disappointed to miss out on selection, but revealed that communication from the top has kept him motivated over the past four weeks.

He told Sky Sports: "You are disappointed not to be involved but the coaches are very good at communicating with their players and telling them what they need to improve on."

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The 27-year-old remains confident that he can offer England something moving forward - a point he appeared to prove in New Zealand - but that there are still aspects of his game to work on.

"Any English player who is not in the squad is going to say they can offer something for England," added Cipriani.

"There are areas of my game that I want to keep improving so I can be that complete player for them.

"To hear the pointers they want me to work on, over the last four weeks I have been trying to do that. I will continue to do so moving into the rest of the season to make sure I can keep ticking the right boxes to put my hand up to represent England."

However, the floodgates have opened for the Sale No.10 after Owen Farrell, Lancaster's first choice in the position, was benched after tough matches against the All Blacks and South Africa. Bath star George Ford currently occupies the position in the England side.

Cipriani the man for England

Cipriani has been at the forefront of speculation as many people believe he is the one that will help England push for success as we bare down upon the 2015 Rugby World Cup, which is to be held on home soil.

Whilst England were away for the Autumn Tests, the Sale playmaker impressed, leading them to three victories on the bounce - a statement that didn't go unnoticed.

Cipriani's determination to get into the England squad is unquestionable, although the fly-half has maintained that he will do everything in his power to make a notable difference in the team.

Point of difference

The 27-year-old concluded: "I am always going to keep working on my strengths and keep trying to highlight those because they will be my point of difference.

"They (the England coaches) are very big on each player having a point of difference, like Manu Tuilagi with his big ball-carrying physicality – that is his point of difference."

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Rugby Union
England Rugby
IRB Rugby World Cup
Owen Farrell
Danny Cipriani
Sale Sharks

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