Shock England recall for Cipriani


Having been overlooked during the RBS 6 Nations, the 28-year-old will be given his first opportunity to work with Jones next week during a three-day camp in Brighton.

Cipriani has not played for England since before the World Cup but, as part of a 26-man squad, will now challenge George Ford and Owen Farrell for the No 10 jersey.

Jones said: ‘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.’

With no players from the top-four clubs — Saracens, Exeter, Wasps and Leicester — included in the gathering, Jones will use the opportunity to look at eight uncapped players.

Northampton back-row Teimana Harrison is selected for the first time since moving over from New Zealand, with Jones working out the best formula to combat dynamic Wallaby back-row duo David Pocock and Michael Hooper.

‘There’s lots of hard work to be done if we are going to play with the intensity needed to beat southern hemisphere teams,’ said Jones.

‘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.’

There is no place for Ospreys teenager Sam Underhill, who would need the RFU’s ‘exceptional circumstance’ clause to be activated, but the flanker could still feature on the tour.

Exciting Sale full back Mike Haley and London Irish winger Alex Lewington, who was relegated to the Championship at the weekend, have bolstered the back-three options.

As well as the three-Test series, Jones must also prepare his squad for a match against Wales at Twickenham on May 29.

Having played 17 minutes for Northampton on his return from concussion on Saturday, skipper Dylan Hartley will be hoping to start for the first time since the Grand Slam win over France.

‘I feel like I need to play,’ said Hartley. ‘In the Six Nations I only played one game with a two-month lay-off. There are no games now so I am just going to have to work very hard on my fitness and prepare myself as best as I can for that Wales game.

‘You do all the build-up and return-to-play protocols but nothing prepares you for a live match situation or a tackle. In training, if you replicate a tackle it is all controlled.

‘I have desperately missed that team environment. When injured, you are on the outside a little bit and it’s hard to have an input. I am just looking forward to being in a team again.’

Hartley’s Saints team-mate Tom Wood is once again overlooked and will have surgery on a neck injury next week.

Newcastle scrum-half Micky Young, Harlequins prop Kyle Sinckler, Sale hooker Tommy Taylor, Bath centre Ollie Devoto and lock Charlie Ewels are the other uncapped players.

Jones added: ‘The Brighton training camp is a good opportunity for England to get together and train hard.

‘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.’

Backs: M Brown (Harlequins), L Burrell (Northampton), D Care (Harlequins), D Cipriani (Sale), O Devoto (Bath), G Ford (Bath), J Joseph (Bath), M Haley (Sale), A Lewington (L Irish), S Rokoduguni (Bath), A Watson (Bath), M Yarde (Harlequins), M Young (Newcastle).

Forwards: D Attwood (Bath), K Brookes (Northampton), J Clifford (Harlequins), C Ewels (Bath), D Hartley (Northampton), T Harrison (Northampton), P Hill (Northampton), M Kvesic (Gloucester), C Lawes (Northampton), J Marler (Harlequins), C Robshaw (Harlequins), K Sinckler (Harlequins), T Taylor (Sale). – Daily Mail

Original source: Shock England recall for Cipriani