Wasps and England fly-half Danny Cipriani is in line to make his comeback from injury next week, some two months ahead of schedule.
The 20-year-old suffered a fracture dislocation of his right ankle in last season’s Guinness Premiership semi-final against Bath but he could now be named in the Wasps squad to face the same opposition at Adams Park next Wednesday.
Cipriani, who has been touted as a possible Test starter when the Lions face the Springboks on next summer’s tour, had previously been expected to be out until late November, therefore ruling him out of his club side’s opening Heineken Cup fixtures and England’s autumn internationals.
”It will be emotional,” said Cipriani when talking to Sky Sports News about a possible comeback.
”I’ll have to calm myself a bit because I’ll be very excited about it and ready to play.
”It will be good to be in front of a home crowd. Hearing your name called at the beginning of the match, it hits home and you realise that you’re about to take part in a Premiership game and that those five months are over now.”
As well as making his mark on the international scene during 2007/08, Cipriani was instrumental in his club’s remarkable turnaround to win last season’s Premiership crown. He admits, however, that there was a time when he doubted whether he would ever bounce back from an injury that the whole nation was talking about.
”I remember my body went numb and I didn’t really feel too much pain but when I looked at my ankle, my brain said, ‘This is how you’re meant to feel’ and then suddenly I felt pain.
"I had doubts [about returning] and I voiced my opinions but my friends just told me to be quiet because it is what it is and you just have to get on with it and that is what I have tried to do.
”I saw the x-rays that evening and my surgeon did a great job. My ankle was dead straight. I could see the bone and knew that it was going to realign correctly and was going to be fine in the end.”