Cipriani relishing return to England
May 2, 2012
Danny Cipriani will be back in the Premiership next season © Getty Images
Danny Cipriani is adamant that he is a "better person" as a result of his stint in Super Rugby and has his eyes set on an England recall although he admits he will have to prove himself at Sale first.
The fly-half was released from the Melbourne Rebels earlier this week to enable Cipriani to get a full pre-season under his belt with new side the Sale Sharks. Cipriani's time in Melbourne was overshadowed by off-field incident and although he has managed to make the back pages of the newspapers for the right reasons in recent times, it is a side of his career that has perhaps harmed his international chances in the past.
But he is back in the Aviva Premiership and is adamant that he wants to make the headlines for all the right reasons.
"I just want to make the news for what I do on the rugby field," Cipriani told the Manchester Evening News. "I guess, when it comes down to it, I've got quite a lot to prove to myself as I know where I can be and what I can do, and I want to achieve that with Sale.
"I think I will be coming back as a better player and a better person for the experience of playing with Melbourne. I've done a lot of different things in the 18 months I've been out in Australia, and it has all been part of growing up, I guess."
Cipriani won the last of his seven England caps four years ago, and he has underlined a desire to play Test rugby again although current England boss Stuart Lancaster said on Tuesday that he will hold fire on throwing Cipriani back in the international mix and will see how the fly-half plays for Sale first.
"Playing for England again is a huge goal of mine. But my performance and focus has to start at my club and right now all my energies are on pre-season with Sale," he said. "Hopefully, if I can help Sale get off to a good start next season, other things will take care of themselves. But for me, I've got to simply focus on doing the best I can for Sale.
"I want to do the best I can for Sale and to help them achieve some great things, and I firmly believe that the best is yet to come."
© ESPN EMEA Ltd
Toulon's Heineken Cup final victory over Clermont Auvergne may have ended a long title drought for the Top 14 club but two of their players are no strangers to success
We bring you our pick of the best pictures from around the world in the last seven days with the battle for Heineken Cup and Amlin Challenge Cup glory taking centre stage
"If you listen carefully you should be able to hear them mining the granite for the statue of a certain Jonny Wilkinson" Graham Jenkins reports from the Heineken Cup Final
Quade Cooper's defence is better than it was 12 months ago and Robbie Deans has erred in omitting him from the core Wallabies squad to play the Lions, Greg Growden writes