Sport

Rob Miller backs Danny Cipriani after recall to Sale Sharks side for Montpellier Heineken Cup clash

By James Scott

Sale Sharks’ Rob Miller insists Danny Cipriani’s second half performance in the Heineken Cup was no shock, as he is recalled to the side to face Montpellier.

Cipriani – told by England head coach Stuart Lancaster this week that his England credentials depend on his Sale form – will start at fly-half in the south of France.

A Cipriani-inspired performance saw Sale claw back a 15-point final quarter deficit against Cardiff last Sunday, to chalk up their first victory of the season.

Miller – who kicked two conversions against Cardiff last Sunday – emphasised what the former Melbourne Rebels man Cipriani adds to the side.

“I’m pleased for Danny,” said Miller.

“Everyone knows what Danny’s got as he shows it daily in training.

“He’s a class player and everybody knows he can play, so it was no great shock to the boys who train with him every day.

“We all know that he’s an attacking player and from that, he helped create the tries.”

The Cumbrian born winger is hoping the feel-good factor at the club helps them build momentum for the season – starting with their second match in pool six game.

“It’s certainly a better place coming in after a win, with the boys being more upbeat – especially after that second half performance,” said the 23-year old.

“It’s been a tough couple of weeks for everybody previously but we dug in on Sunday and got the rewards.

“By no means will we be taking Montpellier lightly – they had a great season last year and come off some good results previously in their league.

“Momentum is everything in rugby, and we need to keep that going through our training this week and our game at the weekend out in Montpellier to come back and have a big game against Worcester.”

Sharks’ director of rugby Bryan Redpath is looking for his side to push on and improve on their Cardiff performance.

He said: “We gained a lot of confidence from the last twenty five minutes last weekend, but not many teams go to France and win against the top six, no matter how well you’ve been playing.

“It’s a hugely challenging task for us, but one to which we’re looking forward.”

The starting fifteen shows eight changes – one positional – from the side that started against Cardiff Blues last Sunday.

Sam Tuitupou and Richie Gray are absent through injury, Tom Brady returns on the right wing after suspension and Mark Jennings switches to inside centre.

Sale Sharks: 15.Rob Miller, 14.Tom Brady, 13.Will Addison, 12.Mark Jennings, 11.Mark Cueto, 10.Danny Cipriani, 9.Cillian Willis, 1.Eifion Lewis-Roberts, 2.Joe Ward, 3.Tony Buckley, 4.Fraser McKenzie, 5.Kearnan Myall, 6.James Gaskell, 7.David Seymour (capt.), 8.Mark Easter

Replacements: 16.Tommy Taylor, 17.Ross Harrison, 18.Vadim Cobilas, 19.Richie Vernon, 20.Andy Powell, 21.Nathan Fowles, 22.Nick Macleod, 23.Johnny Leota

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