Danny Cipriani and James Haskell keep alive their World Cup dreams by joining Premiership clubs next season

Ross McLean
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Wasps v Northampton Saints - Aviva Premiership
Danny Cipriani has been shortlisted for the Premiership player of the year award (Source: Getty)

World Cup hopefuls Danny Cipriani and James Haskell maintained their hopes of a long-term England future by confirming their respective destinations when they leave Premiership side Wasps in the summer.

Fly-half Cipriani, who has been recalled to the England fold for next month’s series in South Africa after a three-year absence, will join Gloucester when his deal at the Ricoh Arena expires.

Haskell, whose ongoing England chances were dealt a blow following his omission from Eddie Jones’s travelling party to face the Springboks, has signed a one-year contract with Northampton Saints.

Cipriani was linked with a move abroad, although that would have quashed his ambitions of representing England given the Rugby Football Union’s policy of only selecting home-based players.

“Danny is probably in the best form of his career, reflected in his selection in the England squad to tour South Africa, and his signing is a significant one for the club,” said Gloucester director of rugby David Humphreys.

Cipriani, who has been shortlisted for the Premiership player of the year award, added: “Having spoken in depth with David Humphreys and [coach] Johan Ackermann, the future they have planned for the club is enticing and one that I very much want to be part of. It’s the most exciting move of my career to date.”

Haskell, meanwhile, feared his England career was over after being left out of the autumn internationals and being suspended for the opening rounds of the Six Nations, but returned to feature in the final two matches of the tournament against France and Ireland.

“I’m really excited and humbled to be joining a giant of English rugby in Northampton Saints,” said Haskell, who has won 77 England caps. “It’s no secret that I want to continue my international career for as long as possible.

“The only way I can do that is by putting my best foot forward in club rugby and helping Saints fight their way back into contention for silverware.”

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