Cipriani named in England training squad

by AFP

England coach Eddie Jones named eight uncapped players in a 26-man squad on Sunday for a three-day training camp in Brighton ahead of the Six Nations' champions one-off international against Wales and three-Test tour of Australia.

Among those yet to play Test rugby selected by the Australian are Northampton's New Zealand-born back-row Teimana Harrison, who has been in fine form for the Saints this season, Bath lock Charlie Ewels and London Irish wing Alex Lewington.

Dylan Hartley, England's New Zealand-born captain, was included after returning to action with Northampton on Saturday after nearly two months out with a concussion injury suffered when Jones's men clinched a Six Nations grand slam with victory over France in Paris.

Former Melbourne Rebels playmaker Danny Cipriani, who will leave Sale to join former club Wasps next season, was also among the 26-man squad heading to the south coast, where training will take place at Brighton College secondary school from May 17-19.

However, Australian coach Jones's latest squad had a very different look to the won that one the Six Nations as no players from the four sides involved in the English Premiership play-offs -- Saracens, Exeter, Wasps and Leicester -- were selected.

Saracens alone provided the likes of Alex Goode, Owen Farrell, Billy Vunipola, George Kruis, Maro Itoje and Mako Vunipola for the squad that completed England's clean sweep of their major European rivals.

Dylan Hartley has returned from a lengthy concussion to be included in the England squad.Just how many players from the training squad make it onto the June tour of  Australia remains to be seen, but Saturday's 26 will have a decent shot at the Wales game -- England's first international since the Six Nations  at Twickenham on May 29, a match that takes place just 24 hours after the Premiership final at 'headquarters'.  

"The Brighton training camp is a good opportunity for England to get together and train hard ahead of the Wales game and summer tour," said Jones, appointed as England's first overseas coach after Australia knocked the hosts out of last year's World Cup with a convincing 33-13 victory at Twickenham in October.

"While we will be without those players involved in the Premiership semi-finals, it's crucial that we spend as much time together as possible," he added in a Rugby Football Union statement.

"We have an important game at Twickenham at the end of the month, and then a challenging tour to Australia," added Jones, in charge of the Wallaby side that lost the 2003 World Cup final to England.

"There's lots of hard work to be done if we are going to play with the intensity needed to beat southern hemisphere teams.

"We know the speed of the game in Australia will be considerably higher than the RBS 6 Nations, so this short camp, as well as the preparation time ahead of Wales, is going to be vital to our progression.

"Tour places are still up for grabs, and I expect the players in this camp -- as well as those involved in the play-offs -- to continue to make their case for selection."

England training squad


Mike Brown (Harlequins), Luther Burrell (Northampton), Danny Care

(Harlequins), Danny Cipriani (Sale), Ollie Devoto (Bath), George Ford (Bath),

Jonathan Joseph (Bath), Mike Haley (Sale), Alex Lewington (London Irish),

Semesa Rokoduguni (Bath), Anthony Watson (Bath), Marland Yarde (Harlequins),

Micky Young (Newcastle)


Dave Attwood (Bath), Kieran Brookes (Northampton), Jack Clifford

(Harlequins), Charlie Ewels (Bath), Dylan Hartley (Northampton), Teimana

Harrison (Northampton), Paul Hill (Northampton), Matt Kvesic (Gloucester),

Courtney Lawes (Northampton), Joe Marler (Harlequins), Chris Robshaw

(Harlequins), Kyle Sinckler (Harlequins),