Cipriani says rebellious times behind him
May 8, 2014
Danny Cipriani has had one of his best seasons and in March was named Premiership Player of the Month © Pinnacle
Danny Cipriani has admitted that he has often been his own worst enemy but that he is now more focussed as talk of a possible international recall continues to do the rounds. England's growing selection headaches for the summer tour bring that possibility closer by the day.
The last of Cipriani's seven England caps came six-and-a-half years ago since when he has made more headlines for off-the-field scrapes and high-profile girlfriends than for his rugby.
It was injury which first put the brakes on his international career back in 2008. "It took away the feeling of invincibility I'd had since I was first told I would play for England when I was 16," he told the Mirror.
"I worked hard to get back quickly and did, but by then there was a different coaching set-up, results didn't go our way and everyone was giving me stick."
At that time he was still only 21 and unable to grasp what was needed. "I wasn't mature enough to understand that when the coaches changed I needed to as well. There were situations I could have dealt with better. I became a bit rebellious. I see that now."
Cipriani, Ugo Monye and former girlfriend Kelly Brook on holiday ... too often he appeared in newspaper gossip columns rather than sporting ones © Twitter
Under Brian Ashton ("[he] gave me enough rope to hang myself with, as it were, and allowed me to play how I wanted to") Cipriani thrived but when Martin Johnson took over things went wrong.
"It wasn't like me and Martin couldn't be in a room together. It was that the regime at the time wanted to go a different route. I've learned that if I'm put into a different team and a different structure I have to adapt to be part of that."
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