IF you were sad enough to spend most of your weekend on the rugby forums, you might think, among the abuse and foul language, Danny Cipriani was a waste of space. That he deserved to be consigned, at 22, to the rugby's international dustbin.
Yes, the same Danny Cipriani who booted Wasps to a 9-0 win over Saracens in the Guinness Premiership today. Okay, it was no classic. There were better sporting events over the weekend. Manchester United's 3-1 defeat against Everton, Amy Williams's skeleton gold medal in Vancouver, the all-British final at the World Matchplay golf, England's penultimate over defeat against Pakistan in Dubai, and Chiltern Under 15s epic 5-5 draw at chilly Chinnor this morning.
But there was Cipriani, hours after the official announcement of his move to Melbourne Rebels and the Super 15 at the end of the season, coolly booting his side to victory at Adams Park.
I suggested in my blog on Thursday Cipriani might be a better choice than the fading Jonny Wilkinson for the England No10 shirt after Wilko's uncertain performance against Italy a week ago.
That if England coach Martin Johnson had kept him in his plans rather than demoting him to the Saxons bench, he might just have developed a bit of confidence after his serious ankle injury. That he may have become a realistic option for the 2011 World Cup as he is eight years younger than the great World Cup winner Wilko.
This led to copious abuse and explusion from rugby's internet following, for reasons that are hard to comprehend - bitterness and envy have always surrounded the youngster whose mum drives a taxi and father has returned to Trinidad, who needed a scholarship to attend the Oratory School in Reading. Oh, and he goes out with Kelly Brook. That really makes the sad anoraks uptight as the hurl their crude expletives around on what are supposed to be open, democratic forums. I kid you not, there are some unpleasant types out there.
As Wasps move into the play-off positions, just above London Irish, Cipriani attempted to explain his move Down Under in the Sunday Times.
He said: "There has been so much negativity surrounding me, from coaches, pundits, all sorts of others. It has been depressing.
"I have never made any secret of the fact that I want to have a career with England. I have now lost 15 caps I could have won and I could have improved so much by now if I had been given the chance. The best way to get away from all the negativity is to go to Melbourne.
"My rugby has made me depressed and I have got to get back to feeling good about myself and back to being called confident, not arrogant."
Crucially, here's his verdict on England coach Martin Johnson: "It is fair to say that I would have liked to be treated with a little more sympathy by people in the game. I would liked to have spoken to Martin a lot more. People write things about me every day and sometimes it would have been good to set the record straight.
"I was interested in listening to Alex Ferguson discussing Cristiano Ronaldo. I am not for a moment suggesting that I am in his class as a sportsman but he was saying that every person in a team is different and they have to be treated differently – not singled out for special attention, just different."
Spot on Danny. Given Johnson's precarious situation at the helm - the World Cup winner never coached at club level before his elevation to England boss - Cipriani may yet get the chance to play at the World Cup in New Zealand. Under a new coach.
Cipriani's parting shot: "I will be 23 when it happens, hopefully at a peak. I can be back for all the training."
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