Ugo unfazed by selection uncertainty

Ugo Monye insists he is trying not to think about whether he will make England's World Cup squad. [more]

Ugo unfazed by selection uncertainty

Ugo Monye insists he is trying not to think about whether he will make England’s World Cup squad.

The Harlequins wing is vying for a spot in Martin Johnson’s 30-man party for the global gathering in New Zealand next month but he is determined to take each day as it comes rather than focus on ifs and maybes.

Monye’s chances of being named in the final party before the deadline of August 22 were given a boost yesterday when Johnson released fellow wings David Strettle and James Simpson-Daniel.

The 28-year-old now appears to be battling it out with Charlie Sharples and Delon Armitage for the right to join Mark Cueto, Chris Ashton and Ben Foden as England’s back-three choices.

But rather than go through all the permutations of selection and attempt to second guess his national manager, Monye says his focus has to be on making a big impression over the next three weeks.

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"You do wonder about how the final squad will be made up and all I can do is focus on my training and leave the big decisions to the coaches," Monye told the London Evening Standard.

"It could drive you crazy and be a distraction.

"For the players who are left behind when the squad leaves for New Zealand, there will be the Premiership matches and no time to feel sorry for themselves because the club will be expecting the very best from them. And, they could just one phone call away from being asked to fly out and join the World Cup squad.

"My attitude in the coming weeks is that I am going to give my all to try and earn a place in the squad and hope that is enough."

Since starring for the Lions in South Africa two summers ago, Monye has fallen out of favour with his country.

The former Sevens star hasn’t featured in over a year, with Ashton and Cueto establishing themselves as England’s first-choice wing pairing.

But, with just two games before the selection deadline, Johnson is expected to hand Monye his first cap since the draw with Scotland in 2010 when England take on Wales in back-to-back matches this weekend and next.

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