England tour to South Africa
Lancaster sounds warning to Care
May 10, 2012
All eyes will be on Danny Care in South Africa © Getty Images
Care was kicked out of the England squad ahead of the 2012 Six Nations following his arrest for drink driving in the early hours of New Year's Day, one of four recent brushes with the law. The Harlequins scrum-half is currently on police bail after being arrested on suspicion of sexual assault, a claim he denies, but Lancaster has been assured the case will not impact on the tour.
The England coach has met with Care and is confident the 25-year-old now has a clear understanding of what is expected of him.
"In order to be an England player on the field you have to be able to lead yourself off the field. Danny needed to reassure me he could," Lancaster said. "I met Danny. I am pleased with the progress he has made and the maturity he is now showing off the field.
"It is a great opportunity but equally he knows he is treading a very fine line, but I trust him enough to have the confidence to take him. He is a player in form and playing at a good club who are in a big (Premiership) semi-final this weekend.
"I spoke to the solicitor involved (in the case) and there will be nothing happening during the tour. There is no period where he will be brought back during the tour. I am very much with Conor [O'Shea] on this one - we understand the context of what went on that particular evening and Danny's selection is the right one."
One other man who has been included in the squad for the tour to South Africa after a period of exile is James Haskell. The back-row has been playing in Japan and New Zealand with his last appearance for the national side in the quarter-finals of the World Cup last year. Haskell is returning to England ahead of next season and Lancaster is looking for the back-row to step into the shoes of the injured Tom Croft and the suspended Calum Clark on the forthcoming tour.
"I have never coached James," Lancaster said. "When I saw his performances in the World Cup and the Six Nations before then, he is clearly a very good player. He is coming back to England and it is an opportunity, we have lost key men at blindside and I am looking forward to working for him."
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