Wade determined to make most of second chance
May 23, 2013
Christian Wade is the centre of attention ahead of England's forthcoming tour of Argentina © Getty Images
London Wasps winger Christian Wade is determined to prove he is worth a permanent place in England's plans by transferring his outstanding Premiership form to the international stage.
Wade capped a superb domestic campaign, that saw him notch 13 tries in 20 games, with an unprecedented awards double at the Rugby Players' Association awards on Wednesday night where he won both the Player of the Season and Young Player of the Season awards. Jonny Wilkinson is the only other player to have taken both titles although the former England fly-half won them in 1999 and 2003 respectively.
His rich vein of form saw him selected for England's forthcoming tour of Argentina with this weekend's warm-up clash against the Barbarians at Twickenham set to provide Wade with a chance to push his claims for the two-Test series with the Pumas. But the 22-year-old knows nothing is guaranteed having scored a hat-trick for England in a mid-week game against the SA Barbarians during last year's tour of South Africa only to fall out of the reckoning for the end of year internationals and this year's Six Nations.
"You don't really get many opportunities to play for England," Wade told The Daily Telegraph. "You see some players who have seized the opportunity and some who haven't so there is a lot of pressure on doing the job. If I get the opportunity to start against the Barbarians and in Argentina, I need to take it with both hands because it might not come around again.
"There are a lot of young players in the squad who are all pushing for places. It is going to be about using your time wisely and doing the best you can when you are out there."
England skills coach Mike Catt has suggested that team management believed he was not ready for the step up last year but has now thrown the gauntlet down to the in-form Wade. "Christian Wade has been exceptional all season," Catttold the newspaper. "This is a good opportunity for him to say 'I have matured as a player' and put his hand up to be selected for the November Tests.
"Going into the 2015 World Cup, we need to have two players in each position who are capable of playing international rugby. This tour is about finding out whether these guys can perform."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.