News in Brief
McGeechan drops Cipriani Lions hint
Wasps fly-half Danny Cipriani caught the eye in his side's Premiership defeat to Saracens
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- Wasps director of rugby Ian McGeechan has dropped a significant hint that fly-half Danny Cipriani may be involved in this summer's British & Irish Lions tour to South Africa.
McGeechan, who will also take charge of the elite tourists later this year, hailed Danny Cipriani's display in their 19-14 Guinness Premiership defeat by Saracens as his finest of the season. McGeechan names his Lions squad on April 21 and his glowing assessment appears to enhance the 21-year-old's chances of being involved.
"We'll have to see a bit more (before deciding whether he is ready for the Lions)," said McGeechan. "That was comfortably the best game I've seen Danny play since he's come back. That was pretty close to where he was last year before he got injured and I can't give him any higher praise than that.
"That's what's been missing and he had a confidence today that he's not had recently. There were a lot of good things in his game."
- All Blacks assistant coach Wayne Smith has reportedly met with Toulon's rugby league convert Sonny Bill Williams in a bid to lure the player back to New Zealand in time for the 2011 Rugby World Cup.
The Sunday News reports that Smith met Williams in France two weeks ago just days before the centre announced a new one-year deal with his French club. "Every young kid (in New Zealand) aspires to such great heights as playing for the All Blacks," Williams said last year.
The player's manager Khoder Nasser told the newspaper, "His options are wide open. Everyone knows Sonny travels on a Samoan passport so that's one option. He spent the first 16 years of his life in New Zealand so that's another option. And by the time of the World Cup he could have qualified on residency to play for France."
The former Canterbury Bulldogs star will play for a Barbarians XV against the Wallabies in Sydney in June.
- The Chiefs are confident their All Blacks winger Sitiveni Sivivatu will play next weekend to add the icing to 50-26 Super 14 win over the Reds.
Sivivatu, who has scored six tries in the last two weeks, departed the Suncorp Stadium after just 15 minutes with a suspected dislocated left shoulder but team manager Stewart Williams said he was expected to be available amid a positive overall medical report.
"He's going to be fine and at this stage he should be okay for next week, but it all depends how he pulls up when we get home," Williams said today. "He's pretty good at handling those sorts of injuries. Otherwise we're all good on the injury front which is great news."
- Brumbies forward Shawn Mackay is in a medically induced coma in a Durban hospital after being hit by a car following his side's 35-14 loss to the Sharks in their Super 14 clash on Saturday.
Mackay, 26, was struck as he and several players were making their way back to their team hotel after they went out following match according to The Australian newspaper.
Brumbies team doctor Warren McDonald said, "Shawn has sustained severe head and leg injuries but has received first-class medical treatment from the time of the accident. He is currently in a critical condition but is stable and we won't know the full extent of his injuries until he is brought out of a coma in two days time."