Flood sets sights on regaining Test place
June 1, 2012
Toby Flood last played for England back in the quarter-finals of the 2011 World Cup © Getty Images
England's Toby Flood has his eyes firmly set on winning back the fly-half jersey after enduring a difficult injury-ridden season.
Flood lost the fly-half spot to Charlie Hodgson and then Owen Farrell during the 2012 Six Nations due to a knee injury and he was a massive doubt going into England's tour of South Africa. Flood hurt his ankle against Bath on May 5 and then had issues with his groin sparking fears that he would be forced to miss more international action.
Flood missed the 2012 Aviva Premiership final and admits that he faces a tough ask to regain the fly-half berth from the Saracens duo of Hodgson and Farrell.
"It was devastating to miss the final because I had worked so hard to get fit," Flood said. "I'd done 10 or 12 cryotherapy sessions. It's great to be going on the tour but in terms of where I am (in the pecking order) I will just keep my head down, keep working and keep the dialogue open with Stu.
"I will have to try to impress in training and put my hand up. I'll have to try to scream and shout without acting like a spoiled brat, to try to get that shirt back. Every single player in this squad wants to be involved in that first Test match."
The mystery surrounding Flood's fitness sparked a war of words between his club Leicester and England but before the injury sustained on May 5, Flood was showing signs of being back to his Test-level best and he hopes this will be enough to help him get his foot in the door in the new-look set-up.
"Before the injury I was really enjoying my rugby and Leicester were going well, playing really good stuff," Flood said. "To have that brought to an end so suddenly was quite difficult, it stung a bit.
"I would hope that we're coming here with a fresh slate and that it would be a factor that I played until the end of the (regular) season. The frustrating thing about being injured is that you feel like you're always trying to catch up and learn the ropes.
"I don't really know what Brad Barritt and Manu Tuilagi, Owen and Charlie have been doing because I haven't spent the time with them. I've not been involved, so the issue for me is to keep the dialogue going and see what they want."
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