Exeter's Luke Cowan-Dickie plays down England hopes

By Brent PilnickBBC Sport
Luke Cowan-Dickie
Cowan-Dickie has yet to play for the senior England team

Exeter hooker Luke Cowan-Dickie says he is concentrating on playing well for his club before setting his sights on returning to the England set-up.

The 21-year-old this summer with a knee injury and is set to return soon.

"I've just got to focus on my next few games and get back into the Premiership side for Exeter," said Cowan-Dickie.

"I have to get a few Premiership games under my belt before thinking of anything higher."

Having made his debut as an 18-year-old prop the Cornish-born forward has successfully switched to hooker,

He featured regularly in the Exeter squad at the start of the year and impressed the England coaches enough to warrant a place on the plane for the summer series.

Luke Cowan-Dickie
Made Exeter debut as an 18-year-old in a European Challenge Cup match against Cavalieri Prato
Played in the Championship on dual-registration at Plymouth Albion
Won the 2013 Under-20 World Cup with England
Called up to the senior England side for the 2014 tour to New Zealand

"They want to develop you as a player so it's obviously a good thing that I got to go away to New Zealand," he told BBC Sport.

"I still keep in contact with England coaches from the Under-20 team and also now and again keep in contact with Graham Rowntree.

"If the likes of Stuart Lancaster and Graham Rowntree happen to see you and you play well and pick you, then well done, but I just need to crack on and hopefully perform well in the next few Premiership games and see what happens."

But forcing his way back into Exeter's Premiership side will not be easy.

In Cowan-Dickie's absence, Jack Yeandle has impressed so much he has taken over the captaincy from the injured Dean Mumm, while Exeter

"This year Jack's started every single Premiership game and is getting better and better every time," added Cowan-Dickie.

"The competition for places here is getting better and I've just got to try and train just as hard, if not even harder, and perform better, otherwise he's going to keep starting because he's a very good player."

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