In Brief

England rugby coach Eddie Jones sends warning to Danny Cipriani

Wasps fly-half must be on his best behaviour during the tour of South Africa

After naming Danny Cipriani in his 34-man squad for the tour of South Africa, England head coach Eddie Jones says that if the Wasps fly-half misbehaves he’ll be sent home.

Cipriani has earnt a recall to the England squad after a three-year absence. He won the last of his 14 England caps in 2015. The 30-year-old has had a number of misdemeanours in the past and Jones says he won’t hesitate in sending him packing if he’s “disruptive” during the three-Test tour against the Springboks.

Speaking to BBC Radio 5 live, Jones said: “If he is disruptive he won’t be there, it’s as simple as that. There is a plane coming back from Johannesburg as well.” 

Former England scrum-half Matt Dawson admits he was “surprised” by Cipriani’s inclusion, but Jones is unfazed.

The head coach told Sky Sports: “The baggage doesn’t worry me, it is how he behaves in front of me. I can’t control what he has done in the past. All I can do is control what he does in the future. 

“We need to give him that flexibility to display his talent... but he has to understand there is a team and he has to play within that team. It will be exciting to see how he goes.”

After his call-up, Cipriani posted on Twitter: “Grateful for the opportunity. Really appreciate all the messages. Still a lot of work to be done.”

Jones defends Shields selection

Another controversial call-up to the England tour squad is New Zealand-born Brad Shields. The Hurricanes captain, who is 27, will join Wasps next season and was given a “special exemption” to play for England by New Zealand Rugby.

Jones has defended the selection, saying that Shields will provide good cover to Chris Robshaw and “add to the team”.

The England chief told The Daily Telegraph: “Brad Shields is a good, hard-working player who plays for the best team in the Southern Hemisphere. He is a considerable influence in their team, a team that has a lot of skill and talent. He’s a hard-working, gritty player and a great back up to Chris Robshaw.

“I’m not worried about what the All Blacks do. Steve Hansen is old enough and wise enough to know who he wants to pick and I’m old enough and wise enough to know who I want to pick. And I think he can add to the team.”

South Africa vs. England fixtures 

All three Test matches will be live on Sky Sports:

  • 9 June: South Africa vs. England (4.05pm, Johannesburg) 
  • 16 June: South Africa vs. England (4.05pm, Bloemfontein) 
  • 23 June: South Africa vs. England (4.05pm, Cape Town)

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