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Page last updated at 15:42 GMT, Wednesday, 8 October 2008 16:42 UK

Cipriani floored in training row

Danny Cipriani and Josh Lewsey
Cipriani and Lewsey could be involved with England in November

England rugby union star Danny Cipriani was left with a cut lip after he was involved in a training ground bust-up with Wasps team-mate Josh Lewsey.

A source told BBC Sport that Lewsey knocked Cipriani down with a right hook in a row over the 20-year-old missing tackles during a training drill.

But Wasps director of rugby Ian McGeechan said neither player will face any disciplinary action from the club.

"There was a disagreement about how things are done, that was it," he said.

"They (Cipriani and Lewsey) have been out on the training pitch and there have been jokes, as you would expect from rugby players," the 2009 Lions coach told BBC Radio 5 Live.

McGeechan played down the incident

Wasps head coach Shaun Edwards also played down the incident, which came four days before the English champions open their Heineken Cup campaign against French side Castres.

"It is Heineken Cup week. There is always a fight in Heineken Cup week," Edwards said.

"We don't condone punching, particularly in a game because you get sent off for it, but sometimes in training emotions run a little bit wild.

"When it is Heineken Cup week there is an extra edge in training."

Edwards added that Cipriani, who is becoming an increasingly high-profile figure in the media, was treated the same at Wasps as everybody else.

"If he is late for training he will be fined and if his training is not up to scratch he gets told off, as everyone else does," said Edwards.

606: DEBATE
BarryBunn

"No-one at this club is questioning his commitment. He is one of the hardest working players at the club."

Club captain Raphael Ibanez insisted the spat had been blown out of proportion.

"It was an argument between two players, nothing major," said the Frenchman. "These things happen on the rugby field, they are really good friends."

Former England scrum-half Matt Dawson told BBC Radio Five Live: "It's not right but it happened and it will be dealt with by Wasps."

Cipriani only recently made his Wasps return from a five-month lay-off after suffering a career-threatening ankle injury in May.

The fly-half made his comeback six weeks ahead of schedule in Wasps' 27-23 defeat by Bath last Wednesday, when he was replaced after 51 minutes.

Cipriani admitted he had been "a bit rusty and made some mistakes", but was confident he would eradicate his errors with match practice.

Matt Dawson's Rugby Show: 5 Live at 2100 BST
The former England scrum-half talks to James Hook and Ronan O'Gara ahead of the opening Heineken Cup matches
Special studio guest Brian Moore

Although he missed Wasps' 24-19 EDF Energy Cup defeat by Gloucester on Saturday, Cipriani is likely to feature alongside Lewsey against Castres at Adams Park on Sunday.

McGeechan's side desperately need to start their European pool games with a victory against the French side to rejuvenate their faltering season.

Wasps have made their worst start to a Premiership campaign, having lost four of their five league matches, along with their EDF Cup defeat.

World Cup-winner Lewsey, 31, is among England manager Martin Johnson's 32-man squad for the forthcoming autumn internationals, starting with the Pacific Islands on Saturday, 8 November.

Cipriani had been initially named in the England Saxons squad, but could be moved into the senior squad, form and fitness permitting, after Jonny Wilkinson was ruled out because of a dislocated knee.

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see also
Inside Sport: Danny Cipriani
07 Oct 08 |  Inside Sport
Gloucester 24-19 Wasps
04 Oct 08 |  Rugby Union
Falcons upbeat after Wilkinson op
03 Oct 08 |  Newcastle
Comeback display pleases Cipriani
01 Oct 08 |  London Wasps


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