Rugby Rugby

Jones won’t rule out England return for troubled Cipriani

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England fly-half Danny Cipriani could still salvage his international career © AFP / RODGER BOSCH

LONDON, United Kingdom, Sep 5England boss Eddie Jones has told Danny Cipriani that the troubled Gloucester star can still rescue his international career.

Cipriani made his first England start for a decade in South Africa earlier this year.

But the fly-half was fined Sh260,000 (£2,000) after admitting charges of common assault and resisting arrest during his club’s pre-season tour of Jersey.

Cipriani was also sanctioned by the Rugby Football Union.

Yet Jones insists the controversial player’s latest off-field misdemeanour has not fatally damaged his chances.

“We never close the door on anyone. Everyone makes mistakes. He was very contrite afterwards, realised he’s done the wrong thing and we move on from that now,” Jones told reporters on Wednesday.

“I think it’s been dealt with. He was punished by his club, punished by whatever happened with the RFU. He’s now back playing and we’ll look at him in terms of how well he plays.

“In South Africa, he worked well and again at the August camp, he worked well and if he gets an opportunity at the September camp, he’ll have another opportunity to work well.”

Sale winger Chris Ashton could also make that training camp even though he cannot play for seven weeks after being banned following his red card for a tip tackle in a pre-season friendly against Castres.

The latest disciplinary ban came just weeks after he was recalled to the England set-up four years since his last appearance.

Asked if he was concerned by the suspension, Jones said: “I think you’re always concerned when players are not playing. Getting selected is about playing and showing that you can play well for England.

“But having seen the incident, I thought it was a difficult situation. We want him to come back and we want him to play well, so I’m just looking forward to him playing well for Sale.

“I’ve only had Ashton for three days and he was absolutely fantastic, a good, hard worker. Everything that people told me about him was true. I couldn’t have been more pleased with him at the camp.”

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