Rugby Union Danny Cipriani and Nick Easter named in England training squad

Danny Cipriani and Nick Easter have been handed the chance to rebuild their international careers by England boss Stuart Lancaster.

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England coach Stuart Lancaster has named Danny Cipriani and Nick Easter in England's training squad for their Six Nations opener with Wales.

The return of the duo had ben mooted by the British press and Lancaster confirmed on Wednesday that they have been handed the opportunity to emerge from the international wilderness.

Fly-half Cipriani has not played in a Six Nations game since 2008, although he did make multiple appearances on the June tour of New Zealand.

But the Sale Sharks star will need to outshine Owen Farrell, George Ford and Stephen Myler to have a chance of making the matchday squad for the clash at the Millennium Stadium on February 6.

"He's not been far away at all from the New Zealand tour," Lancaster said.

"He came on the tour, he came into the camp in August. Since then he's improved his game, he's worked hard. It's a good chance for Danny to to put a marker down."

Easter has been rewarded for an outstanding season with Harlequins and could feature for the first time in more than three years.

Easter won his last cap in 2011 and gives England another option at the number eight spot after Ben Morgan suffered a broken leg earlier this month.

Asked about Easter's inclusion, Lancaster added: "With Ben Morgan's injury, there's a need for specialist number eights in the squad.

"Nick has been outstanding and deserved his opportunity to prove that he can replicate that at international level."

Northampton Saints lock Courtney Lawes is left out as he recovers from an ankle injury, while Leicester Tigers centre Manu Tuilagi could miss the majority the tournament with a groin complaint.

"We will continue to work with Northampton Saints and Leicester Tigers with Courtney and Manu to see where they are as the Six Nations progresses," Lancaster said.

Meanwhile, Sam Burgess, who recently joined Bath from Australian Rugby League side South Sydney Rabbitohs, is included in the England Saxons squad to face Ireland Wolfhounds next Friday.

Fellow league convert Chris Ashton has also been selected in that group for the Saxons game, which will help Lancaster decide on his squad for the Wales match.

Lancaster confirmed: "We will use the four-day training camp and the Saxons game to narrow down selection as we lead into the opening game against Wales."

Squad in full:

Forwards: Dave Attwood (Bath), Calum Clark (Northampton), Dan Cole (Leicester), Alex Corbisiero (Northampton), Nick Easter (Harlequins), Dylan Hartley (Northampton), James Haskell (Wasps), Graham Kitchener (Leicester), George Kruis (Saracens), Joe Marler (Harlequins), Geoff Parling (Leicester), Chris Robshaw (Harlequins, captain), Billy Vunipola (Saracens), Mako Vunipola (Saracens), David Wilson (Bath), Tom Wood (Northampton), Tom Youngs (Leicester)

Backs: Brad Barritt (Saracens), Mike Brown (Harlequins), Luther Burrell (Northampton), Danny Care (Harlequins), Danny Cipriani (Sale), Kyle Eastmond (Bath), Owen Farrell (Saracens), George Ford (Bath), Alex Goode (Saracens), Jonathan Joseph (Bath), Jonny May (Gloucester), Stephen Myler (Northampton), Jack Nowell (Exeter), Billy Twelvetrees (Gloucester), Anthony Watson (Bath), Richard Wigglesworth (Saracens), Ben Youngs (Leicester)

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