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Rugby World Cup Will Carling: I wouldn't choose Sam Burgess for RWC

Former England captain Will Carling says he would not select Sam Burgess in his squad for the Rugby World Cup.

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play (Omni Sports)

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Former England captain Will Carling says he would not select Sam Burgess in his squad for the Rugby World Cup.

Burgess is expected to be named among the centres when Stuart Lancaster reveals his 31-man party later on Thursday, possibly at the expense of the more experienced Luther Burrell.

With just 70 minutes of Test rugby under his belt since his switch from rugby league, Carling questions whether Burgess has earned his place.

"I'm in awe of him as a rugby league player, it's amazing, but I don't think he's a finished article in rugby union," he told Omnisport. "I don't quite understand why England are so keen to rush him in.

"It took [New Zealand's] Sonny Bill [Williams] quite a long time, a couple of years, to get used to union. It's a very different game.

"So personally I wouldn't have had him in the World Cup squad because I think he needs longer.

"I think he will be very good but he's not yet."

Fly-half Danny Cipriani is expected to miss out, despite staking his claim with an impressive try-scoring performance from the bench in last weekend's 25-20 defeat to France.

"In the short time he's been given he's shown some real class," added Carling. "I don't quite understand why he wasn't given more of a chance.

"There's always going to be hard selections to make. I know that's part of Lancaster's job.

"I'm just not sure Danny - out of all the players - was given the same crack that the others were."

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