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Tyrone Howe: Danny boy can become a man following switch to Australia

I am taking bets to see how long it takes Danny Cipriani to get a part on Neighbours, now that he appears to be heading ‘Down Under’ to the Melbourne Rebels.

I wonder whether the name provided an extra incentive as he certainly seems to have become the enfant terrible of English rugby.

However, as I suggested several weeks ago, this move may actually serve both Cipriani and English rugby well in the long term.

At the moment, his talent is going nowhere fast and it could well be true for the Wasps outhalf that a change will be as good as a break.

The challenge of Super 15 rugby, as it is to be known, will be as much a test of Cipriani’s character as of his rugby ability.

In recent pronouncements about his treatment at the hands of England’s coaches, pundits and media, not once did Cipriani suggest he also might have a role in this.

There is little doubt that he has been badly handled — he came back from a horrendous injury too quickly and with far too much expectation, and then when things did not work out, a lack of communication has only compounded the issues.

I have a fair amount of sympathy for the player, but if Cipriani thinks that he will face any less “negativity”, as he calls it, in Australia, he doesn’t know the Australians.

He can expect major sledging, both from opposition players and the media.

The British media seems to thrive on sensationalism, the Aussies thrive on sporting success — they do not tolerate failure or underperformance.

If Cipriani comes through this experience, he will return a better player, but maybe more importantly a more rounded person with the attitude to prove wrong those Poms who doubted him before he left.

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