Young tips Wasps stars to play big part for England in World Cup
13:25 05 December 2012
PA Wire/Press Association Images
With the 2015 Rugby World Cup the centre of much discussion this week, London Wasps director of rugby Dai Young believes that his club possess a host of English stars more than capable of making the step to international rugby in the lead-up to the tournament.
Young is well-placed to debate the potential of some of the talent coming through at Wasps, having overseen the emergence of more than 20 players in his time at Cardiff into the Wales set-up.
“There were a lot of very talented youngsters around when I became coach at Cardiff and it was fantastic seeing so many of them come through our academy, into our senior squad and then become stars for Wales, and for some of them the Lions as well,” he said.
“I look around at Wasps and I have no doubt that there are players here who are every bit as good at their age as any I saw back then and there is no reason that this club can’t have a lot of players pulling on an England shirt and representing their country at the next World Cup.”
The Wasps boss believes that the emergence of Joe Launchbury during the autumn internationals as a force for England in the second-row will also inspire a number of his young players.
“Joe did more than just make the England squad – he went out there and performed very strongly and I think that says to our young guys that no matter how old you are, if you make the step-up, you can go out there and have a big impact. You just need to keep working very hard to get your chance.
“You look at our squad and you think that guys like Billy Vunipola, Elliot Daly and Christian Wade are all youngsters with huge futures at the highest level. Throw in Joe Simpson, who has been very good for us this season and is still very young, and other young players like Sam Jones, Simon McIntyre and Tommy Bell, and you’d have to say that we’ve got a fantastic core of English talent here already making a big impact in the Aviva Premiership.
“Those players are going to get better and the challenge for us at Wasps is to keep these guys here together so that when 2015 comes around there’s a healthy representation of our club at the World Cup.”