Lancaster: Vunipola 'ticks all the boxes' at No.8
April 9, 2013
Billy Vunipola appears to be in line for his first England cap © PA Photos
Wasps had just two representatives turning out for England during the Six Nations with both James Haskell and Joe Launchbury playing a key part in their campaign. But Lancaster also included Vunipola and Elliot Daly in the mix as cover for various injuries and the pair could now be on the plane to Argentina come the summer.
Lancaster took in Wasps' Amlin Challenge Cup quarter-final against Leinster on Friday and was impressed by a host of their younger players while Christian Wade would have done his chances no harm after he bagged an impressive brace of tries.
"I thought Elliot did well at full-back as well as Billy Vunipola, Joe Launchbury and Tom Lindsay; there are lots of players here who are all there or thereabouts for the summer tour," Lancaster told the London Evening Standard.
"From an England point of view it's very exciting because we know these guys are not just going to be around for the next six months, but the next six years and beyond."
And Vunipola, who will join Saracens at the end of the season, looks set to earn his first Test cap come the summer after missing out during the Six Nations due to injury.
"In terms of a ball-carrying No.8, Billy ticks all the boxes," said Lancaster. "He was unfortunate not to get his opportunity against France. I told him he was selected and he twisted his ankle in training so it was disappointing for him to miss out."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Concussion, relegation and the mother of all surprises - it's the Monday Maul.
Huw Richards assesses where Wales are after a mixed Six Nations, with front row seats still very much available for the World Cup
John Mitchell lapped up the action on 'Sensational Saturday' - but warns not to expect a repeat come Rugby World Cup time later this year
Craig Dowd warns England, Ireland and Wales they should play to their strengths rather than those of the All Blacks and the Wallabies