Lancaster awaits Cipriani outcome

Published: Tuesday 23rd June 2015 by The News Editor

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England head coach Stuart Lancaster is awaiting the outcome of the police investigation following Danny Cipriani’s drink-drive arrest before determining whether the fly-half can be included in his World Cup squad.

England began their summer training camp on Monday without centre Manu Tuilagi and hooker Dylan Hartley, who will miss the tournament after Lancaster responded decisively to recent lapses in judgement and Cipriani could join them on the absentee list.

The Sale fly-half was arrested on suspicion of drink driving earlier this month and must wait until early August to discover the outcome of a police investigation.

For the time being he remains part of Lancaster’s initial 50-man squad for the World Cup, which will be cut to 31 ahead of the opening match with Fiji at Twickenham on September 18.

Lancaster said: “(I am) waiting to see what the Police investigation will determine. I’ve got no position at all at the moment.

“He’s not been charged with anything so as a consequence is in camp and training as everyone else is.

“I’ll deal with it as and when it’s appropriate.”

Lancaster expects Cipriani to be able to go to the United States for the forthcoming high-altitude training camp in Denver, Colorado.

The England head coach expressed frustration that omissions have been forced upon him.

Lancaster added: “It’s not ideal that you’re in that position where you’re having to make decisions like that, particularly when they’re high-quality players.”

And the group have been reminded of their responsibilities, with many of them taken back to Lancaster’s first camp as head coach in January 2012 in Leeds where he set out the team’s values.

Wing David Strettle has withdrawn from the England squad to prepare for his move to French Top 14 side Clermont Auvergne after leaving Saracens.

“He rang me towards the end of last week,” Lancaster said.

“He’d been to France, he considered his options and alternatives and decided to pull out.”

Bath wing Semesa Rokoduguni has replaced Strettle and will leave Fiji imminently to join up with England.

Wasps’ Christian Wade remains in the selectors’ minds.

Published: Tuesday 23rd June 2015 by The News Editor

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