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Cipriani warned over Super 15 move

06/02/2010 07:07:05 AM Comments (0)

England rugby manager Martin Johnson has warned Danny Cipriani that he will not be considered for his national team if he goes through with a proposed move to new Super 15 franchise the Melbourne Rebels.

Cipriani has been approached by the Rebels about joining them once his current contract with Wasps ends in May.

A move to Australia would rule the flyhalf out of the 2011 Six Nations and therefore almost certainly out of Johnson's plans for the World Cup in New Zealand later in the year.

Asked on Friday whether it was possible Cipriani could remain part of the elite squad when based in Melbourne, Johnson responded: "No of course it's not.

"The seasons are the same. They are playing through February and March so he wouldn't be available for England during the Six Nations.

"It is his choice. If he wants to do that, it is up to him. It is impossible for him to play for England in the Six Nations if he is over there. I am sure he understands that."

Cipriani, 22, appears to be seriously considering moving Down Under having grown disillusioned about his chances of establishing himself as an England regular under Johnson, who admitted he had made no effort to persuade him to stay.

Once considered the heir apparent to Jonny Wilkinson, Cipriani's international career stalled in the wake of a serious ankle injury in 2008 and he is currently part of the second-string Saxons squad, for whom he is due to play against Italy A on Sunday.

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