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Cipriani: 'It's the only reason I play rugby'


Cipriani: 'It's the only reason I play rugby'

Danny Cipriani is delighted his self-belief has been rewarded with an international call-up because he has “played the game just to play for England”.

The 30-year-old was not offered a new deal at Wasps earlier this year and could have departed for the Top 14 in France as he appeared to be outside the England picture.

But Cipriani held off on any contract, certain he had the credentials to play for Eddie Jones’ side, and his form in his final months at Wasps has led to an international recall and a reported two-year deal at Gloucester.

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“I have been here before and it’s not about following the wave up and down and letting your emotions ride with it, but staying on an even keel,” Cipriani said, as quoted by the Guardian.

“Anyone who knows me knows I’ve played the game just to play for England. It is now down to me to make sure things go well. I never gave up on England otherwise I would have signed a contract months ago.

“I love the attritional side of French rugby and I had conversations. It was not easy to hold out with people pointing out that I was not getting picked, but perhaps that wasn’t the right moment for me.

“When it is meant to be, it will all fall into place. It is tough to break into a squad with so much quality, but I have an opportunity to go in and leave a positive imprint.”

Cipriani has 14 caps to his name, however his last start for England was in 2008.

“Yeah I was waiting on a call-up and it definitely wasn’t expected and it happened. Obviously it made the decision for me to stay in England. It didn’t necessarily mean I was definitely going abroad, but it was something I was still looking at. I was in a difficult position having to put clubs off for a while and kept doing it, so it was timely and I am very grateful for the call-up.”

“I played rugby my whole life to try and play for England, I have had moments when it has been there and moments when it has not. When you are younger you don’t quite savour the moments and now in this time of your career – I am just coming into my prime – you really do appreciate those moments, whether it be training days or matchdays, you are much more in the here-and-now and that is something I am thoroughly enjoying.”

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Cipriani: 'It's the only reason I play rugby' | RugbyPass