Danny Cipriani to join Gloucester next season to help England career

Danny Cipriani
Danny Cipriani has won 14 caps for England - his last appearance for his country was in 2015

Wasps fly-half Danny Cipriani has signed for Premiership rivals Gloucester.

The 30-year-old, whose contract at the Coventry-based club ends this summer, has opted to stay in England to remain eligible for international selection.

Cipriani was recently recalled to the England squad after a three-year absence.

He helped Wasps finish third in the Premiership to set up a semi-final against Saracens.

Former England fly-half Paul Grayson told BBC Radio 5 live that the move will allow Cipriani to pursue his international dreams.

"He obviously will have had offers from overseas," he said. "There will be routes much easier for him to give up his England dream and walk away from this country.

"But to get picked for the tour of South Africa this summer means the door is wide open. If he wants to play for England he must play here.

"Sale did him a favour and he lit it up at Wasps - now Gloucester get the opportunity to have his mercurial talent."

Cipriani won the last of his 14 England caps in the World Cup warm-up against France in August 2015.

England and Harlequins scrum-half Danny Care told the BBC's Rugby Union Weekly podcast that Cipriani has been "playing the best rugby of his career" this season.

"He's had a brilliant season with Wasps and he's in a team at Wasps with some outstanding players who have played very well this year, and he's been an absolute lynchpin in that," said Care.

"I think he deserves the call-up, and he has to now prove he deserves a spot in the 23 or the starting team. I'm sure he will go there, train really hard, and put his hand up. Then it's obviously up to Eddie Jones and the coaches."

Stuart Lancaster, Leinster assistant coach and former England head coach, told the BBC Cipriani "100% has an England future" and agreed that he is "certainly playing well enough".

Lancaster brought Cipriani back into the England squad for the 2014 tour to New Zealand after a six-year international absence.

"I'm really pleased he is staying in England and I believe Gloucester will get the best out of him," said Lancaster.

"In my time he came back into the team for New Zealand but was unfortunate in his position as George Ford and Owen Farrell were ahead of him.

"Development never goes in a straight line and there are ups and downs along the way. Danny had a bad injury before I took over and went to Australia for a while, and all these things play a part.

"He has played really well for Wasps over the past couple of years, and it's about the here and now for Danny, about delivering in front of Eddie and proving he can be the player we all hope he can be.

"He provides versatility and can play 15 as well. He has his opportunity now and it's up to Danny to take it."

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