England recall Danny Cipriani to training squad ahead of summer tour to New Zealand
Last Updated: 15/05/14 10:28pm
Danny Cipriani: Impressive performances for Sale Sharks this season
Sale fly-half Danny Cipriani has been called up by England for the first time since 2008 as Stuart Lancaster unveiled his initial training squad for the tour of New Zealand.
Cipriani was tipped for a recall after an impressive season for the Sharks, and he will join a 20-man squad for training in Teddington ahead of a fixture against the Barbarians on June 1, followed by the trip to New Zealand.
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The 26-year-old won the last of his seven caps in 2008, completing the return to favour of a gifted player who lost his way amid concerns over his attitude and celebrity lifestyle.
But Cipriani's game-management has been key to Sale's sixth-place finish in the Premiership this season, just 12 months after the club flirted with relegation.
"Danny is back because of his form at Sale. He's played well. I take my decisions based on what the coaches say and what I see myself," Lancaster said.
"I spoke to Danny prior to the Six Nations, giving him areas to work on which he has done. I called him on Tuesday to invite him into the squad.
"I've coached Danny more than most because during the majority of my time as England Saxons coach he was on it. His club have done a fantastic job of making him a more rounded and mature person."
Lancaster has also named Worcester captain Chris Pennell, one of the few bright spots in a tough season for the Warriors, while Exeter provide four players in Luke Cowan-Dickie, Dave Ewers, Sam Hill, Tom Johnson and Henry Slade.
"I spoke to Danny prior to the Six Nations, giving him areas to work on which he has done. I called him on Tuesday to invite him into the squad."
Lancaster will add around 20 players to his squad following the Aviva Premiership play-offs and the finals of the European competitions, and he will confirm his squad for the clash with the Barbarians on May 26.
Lancaster said: "The New Zealand tour and the game against the Barbarians give us a chance to look at a wide group of players, some of whom are well known to us from the Elite Player Squad, others who we will get to work with for the first time next week.
"That is an exciting challenge for us coaches and it's a great opportunity for those players to put a marker down for selection for the tour and the Barbarians game."
Training squad: Kieran Brookes (Newcastle), Freddie Burns (Gloucester), Danny Cipriani (Sale), Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter), Dave Ewers (Exeter), Sam Hill (Exeter), Tom Johnson (Exeter), Matt Kvesic (Gloucester), Jonny May (Gloucester), Ben Morgan (Gloucester), Michael Paterson (Sale), Chris Pennell (Worcester), Dan Robson (Gloucester), Charlie Sharples (Gloucester), Henry Slade (Exeter), Tommy Taylor (Sale), Henry Thomas (Sale), Henry Trinder (Gloucester), Billy Twelvetrees (Gloucester), Marland Yarde (London Irish)