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Sale boss Steve Diamond is surprised Danny Cipriani was left out by England

Sale director of rugby Steve Diamond is surprised that fly-half Danny Cipriani was left out of England's World Cup squad.

But Diamond claims the 27-year-old has quickly put aside his heartache and will be back firing for the Sharks' Aviva Premiership campaign.

Cipriani failed to make the cut as England head coach Stuart Lancaster named his final 31-man party for this autumn's tournament last week.

Sharks boss Diamond said: "He is fine. He is disappointed but he moves on quickly.

"I was surprised after his performances for England but I am not a selector. If I was he would have been picked.

"But he understands he couldn't do anything more in the eyes of the selectors. Other people are in front of him and he can't do anything to change that."

Diamond was speaking at the AJ Bell Stadium at the Sharks' pre-season media day. Cipriani was not present having been granted time off by the club following his release from England's training camp.

"He is on holiday for a couple of weeks and then he will be back with us," said Diamond.

"He has been training all through the summer with England, so he just needs some rest away from rugby.

"I speak to him regularly and he is in a fine mood and looking forward to coming back, but it is just about switching off from the rugby for a couple of weeks and getting some sun."

Sharks officials were not able to comment on reports claiming Cipriani is being lined up for a role in a film.

But new team-mate Peter Stringer, the former Ireland scrum-half who joined the Sharks this summer, is looking forward to linking up with the controversial star.

The 37-year-old former Bath player said: "We will welcome Danny back and it will be great for me to play with him.

"He is a talented player and in the last couple of years he has shown his true class.

"He is unlucky not to make the World Cup squad but England's loss is Sale's gain and to get a guy of his quality back will be great."

Sale will prepare for the season with home and away games against Newcastle and Leicester in the upcoming 'Kings of the North' tournament before their Premiership opener at Saracens on October 17.


From Belfast Telegraph