Rugby World Cup 2015: Nick Easter 'ready' for England call-up

By Chris JonesBBC Radio 5 live rugby reporter
Nick Easter
Nick Easter failed to make the final cut for Stuart Lancaster's 31-man England squad
Rugby World Cup
Hosts: England and Wales Dates: 18 September-31 October
Coverage: Live commentary on BBC Radio 5 live and sports extra, BBC Radio Wales and in Welsh on BBC Radio Cymru, plus live text commentary on every match on the BBC Sport website.

Harlequins number eight Nick Easter says he still hopes to play for England again, despite narrowly missing out on selection for the World Cup.

The 37-year-old impressed in the second warm-up match against France in Paris, but was unable to force his way into Stuart Lancaster's final squad.

Easter says he has to be prepared if he is called up in the event of an injury.

"I'm the next cab off the rank, so if anyone goes down I have got to be ready," he told BBC Radio 5 live.

"I had a week off, a little bit of a sulk for a day, and now back in with Harlequins - keeping my sharpness with ball in hand and conditioning up - ready to answer any calls, and also moving on with my club."

Gloucester number eight Ben Morgan - who has returned to fitness after a broken leg - was preferred to Easter, with Saracens' George Kruis selected as the fourth lock in the 31-man squad.

England's Pool A fixtures
Friday, 18 September v Fiji
Saturday, 26 September v Wales
Saturday, 3 October v Australia
Saturday, 10 October v Uruguay

"It's a cut-throat business and only 31 out of the 50 could make it," Easter continued.

"In myself I know I did as much as I could do to push it, and it did go to the eleventh hour. It was tight, I know it went down to the wire and the England coaches had a meeting into the night."

After three years out of the international scene, Easter was brought back into the fold for the 2015 Six Nations, winning his 50th cap in the process.

" I was fortunate enough to go to the previous two World Cups. I would love to still play a part in this one, but it's been brilliant being back in, and let's hope I haven't just finished yet."

Easter says he is extremely proud to have proven he can still perform at the highest level at this stage of his career.

Lancaster explains World Cup picks

"I'm very very very proud," Easter added. "I got told in 2012 I wouldn't make the World Cup, fair enough.

"Then they brought me back in at the beginning of the year, and a lot has changed in the set-up. It's a really good environment, the training centre, the management of the players, the coaching, they are in a very good place. I am expecting very, very big things."

However Easter has warned that Fiji will be a significant threat in the opening match of the tournament on the 18 September.

"This is their World Cup final,external-link" Easter said. "They have had a lot of time to prepare, and will be analysing England with a fine tooth comb, as England will Fiji.

"I expect England to pull away in the last 20 minutes, but Fiji have the individuals to be a very, very dangerous team."

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