Former England national team coach Andy Robinson believes having to fight for a place in the England national team is good for winger Chris Ashton and it will ultimately benefit not only him but also his club Saracens FC and the England national team as well.
Ashton, a former Rugby League player changed codes to become a member of the Rugby Union and since then, he has been a sort of an enigma, breaking into the Northampton Saints side in the Aviva Premiership and the England national team squad under Andy Robinson and he made quite a name for himself as he became the top scorer for the national team in both the Six Nations as well as the World Cup, and that too, from a wing position.
But over the last season, he has failed to recapture that form which led Saracens FC to splash out on his signature from their Premiership rivals and failed to fire both for club and the country in last season’s Six Nations. England head coach Stuart Lancaster gave him some time off and he was not included in the England team for their summer tour of South Africa.
And in his absence, Marland Yarde and Christian Wade made quite an impact on the wings with Yarde scoring twice on his debut whereas Wade earned a late call up to be a part of the British and Irish Lions’ tour of Australia in the summer.
But Robinson believes this time off from the national team will be beneficial to the player and the competition for places on the wings will only bring out the best in him and this best can fire both Saracens FC and the England national team to glory in the Six Nations this season and Rugby World Cup on home soil.