Lion not ready

Lions tourist Joe Worsley admits he is not yet ready to return to international rugby. [more]

Lion not ready

Lions tourist Joe Worsley admits he is not yet ready to return to international rugby.

The England flanker started the third Test for the Lions in South Africa but has been short of game time since arriving back in the UK.

Worsley was named in the England squad for this month’s autumn internationals against Australia, Argentina and New Zealand but was sent back to his club for the latest round of Guinness Premiership action.

And, after being part of a shock Wasps defeat to Leeds Carnegie yesterday, Worsley made it clear that he isn’t at the level required for a return to England colours in time for Saturday’s clash with the Wallabies.

"I need more games,” said Worsley after Wasps went down 15-9 at Adams Park. 

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“I’m way off match fitness yet.

"This wasn’t exactly similar to an international in terms of intensity." 

Worsley was joined in the Wasps squad by fellow Lion Simon Shaw, who was making his first appearance since his heroics with Britain and Ireland’s elite five months ago.

The return of the veteran second row will have pleased England team manager Martin Johnson but, like Worsley, Shaw is in need of more game time before turning out for his country.

"That (Lions tour) was a while back and Simon himself feels he needs to get some rugby under his belt," explained Wasps’ director of rugby Tony Hanks.

"With most players you’d say two games wouldn’t be enough, but Simon Shaw is not a normal player.”

Wasps play London Irish in the Anglo-Welsh Cup on Sunday in what would be Shaw’s second comeback game, with England facing Argentina at Twickenham the following Saturday.

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