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Cipriani keeping it simple

Published 01/06/2015

Danny Cipriani has become a big game player
Danny Cipriani has become a big game player

Danny Cipriani hopes that by favouring the simple over the spectacular he will force his way into England's World Cup squad.

Cipriani's presence at England 2015 remains uncertain despite conducting Sunday's 73-12 rout of the Barbarians with a man of the match turn at Twickenham, finishing his afternoon with two tries within a 33-point haul.

Head coach Stuart Lancaster noted that Cipriani has matured into a big-game player and his understated management of the contest, albeit behind a dominant pack, was exemplary.

The 27-year-old playmaker produced a classy finish for his second try, but he knows that excelling at the basics offers his best chance of participating at the home World Cup.

"It's down to me to keep showing good decision making and keep doing the things I'm good at," Cipriani said.

"It's not necessarily about making long passes or doing something spectacular, it's about making the right decisions over and over again.

"I think I've got that trust from the coaches now. I did what I did in the Six Nations.

"I didn't get as much game time as I could have done, but every single day in training I had to put my hand up and I made sure I did that."

Cipriani's immaculate goalkicking at the setting for all but one of England's World Cup games will have impressed Lancaster, as will the ease with which he switched positions to full-back in the second half.

With George Ford and Owen Farrell certain to feature as the two fly-halves in the squad named by Lancaster on August 31, it could end up being a straight choice between Cipriani and Henry Slade.

Cipriani covers 10 and 15, while the untested but hugely promising Slade provides an option at 10, 12 and 13. The overall balance of three-quarter resources will shape Lancaster's final selection.

"It's important to have that extra string to your bow and be able to put your hand up in all sorts of positions," Cipriani said.

"For the World Cup you need to have players you can mix and vary. There aren't many players who play in just one position these days, except scrum-halves and hookers."

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