Steve Diamond: Sale Sharks boss 'flattered' by England link

By Nathan MiddletonBBC Sport
Steve Diamond
Former Sale hooker Steve Diamond returned to the club in January 2011 after a previous spell as a coach at the Sharks

Sale Sharks director of rugby Steve Diamond would be open to an England role should an opportunity arise.

Former England utility back Austin Healey suggestedexternal-link ex-Russia head coach Diamond could work within a coaching set-up under a director of rugby.

Diamond had a stint coaching the England Saxons back in 2002.

"Well it's flattering, but in reality I think they've got a lot to do themselves in deciding how they go with it," the 46-year-old told BBC Sport.

"I think we need someone with vast experience in there at the top and put a coaching team underneath it.

"There are probably better people than me around, but who knows?

"I think you need to have won something of real significance and I haven't - having said that, the last two coaches of England have never won anything either so you never know do I?"

Cipriani ready for England

Danny Cipriani focuses on Sharks form

Sale fly-half Danny Cipriani was part of the England training squad in the build up to the World Cup, but George Ford and Owen Farrell were preferred when the final squad was chosen.

The former Wasps and Melbourne Rebels man, 27, agreed a new two-year deal with the Sharks in February and still harbours international ambitions.

"I've not given up on England," he said. "I think the decisions were all very close and difficult and it was devastating to see the boys go out."

"I need to play well at the club, start the season well and get Sale on a run.

"That's the most important thing for me at the minute and off the back of that things may happen or you might get call-ups

"It all starts with your club form and if you don't have that, nothing happens with it."

The new recruits

Brian Mujati
Brian Mujati spent four years in the Premiership with Northampton before his move to France

It will be a difficult start to the new season for Sale when they travel to reigning Premiership champions Saracens on Saturday.

It has been a case of tweaking the squad during over the summer with five new arrivals in Neil Briggs, Peter Stringer, Bryn Evans, Nev Edwards and Brian Mujati.

Former South Africa and Northampton prop Mujati is looking forward to playing in the Premiership again after joining from French side Racing Metro 92.

"I think rugby is the same wherever you go, but for me it's a lot to do with the lifestyle and I think I prefer to live in the UK," said the 31-year-old.

"I wouldn't say I'm a better player, I think I have comeback with a bit more enthusiasm I think.

"I'm excited to play rugby again which is interesting for me so I'm looking forward to things."

BBC Radio Manchester's Rugby Union Extra returns this Thursday, 15 October at 18:00 BST.