Saracens' Joel Tomkins eyes improvement to force England call up
Last Updated: 05/07/13 12:58pm
Joel Tomkins: Missed England's tour of Argentina with an ankle injury
Saracens' Joel Tomkins is keen to put the disappointment of missing England's tour to Argentina this summer through injury behind him and focus on the upcoming Aviva Premiership season.
The Rugby League convert enjoyed a good season with Sarries as they topped the Premiership table only to lose out in the play-offs.
The centre is hoping to build on his impressive end of season form and use pre-season to work on a number of his weaknesses in a bid to put pressure on those now ahead of him in the England pecking order.
"I was disappointed to miss the tour, it was a blow at the time, but you have to look at the positive side of these things - I get a full preseason and I can work on a few things I need to work on," said Tomkins.
"I'm just looking to get some quality work under my belt this preseason, there has been a great atmosphere so far in our first week back in and I'm looking forward to the beginning of the season"
"I think if you start the season well for your club, you put your face in the frame for selection for those autumn internationals and I'm sure everybody who's in and around that environment will have the same goal to try to push their way in.
"There are a few England lads who have gone away with the Lions and then there are the England boys who have been to Argentina - so it's up to people in my position to start well and try and overtake them."
The 26-year-old insists that the start of the season can't some soon enough and that his major aim is simply to improve from his level during the last campaign.
"I'm just looking to get some quality work under my belt this preseason, there has been a great atmosphere so far in our first week back in and I'm looking forward to the beginning of the season," he said.
"Last season was really enjoyable and I owe the coaching staff a lot for that. Mark McCall was brilliant - he was patient and he set out a structured plan for me and I think if you've got that kind of plan and a vision of where you want to be at certain times in the process it's much easier.
"Hopefully I can build on last year, by the end of the season I was playing regular rugby in some really big games and I want to be pushing myself to keep on producing.
"There is more competition for places and that can only be a good thing; all successful teams have it, and Saracens are no different."