PHIL VICKERY believes that Gloucester have captured a ‘world-class rugby player’ in his former England team-mate Danny Cipriani.
And ex-Gloucester and England skipper Vickery feels that Cipriani (pictured) can leave a legacy at Kingsholm following his stint with the club that begins next season.
Gloucester’s swoop for the 30-year-old was confirmed just four days after he was named in Eddie Jones’ England squad to tour South Africa next month.
Vickery readily acknowledges it is a signing that has captured the imagination of a rugby-mad city.
‘What we have to do is remember what Danny Cipriani is,’ he said.
‘I don’t use these words very often, but he is a world-class rugby player, and that is world class in anyone’s book.
‘He’s had his ups and downs, he has had his trials and tribulations.
‘But the Danny Cipriani that I have seen in the last two or three years is a Danny Cipriani that I had the privilege of playing with and seeing all his skill-sets, and now seeing a maturity with that.
‘I can see Danny coming in, looking at the great nucleus of young guys coming through at Gloucester, and thinking, ‘Wow, I can leave a real Danny Cipriani legacy here’.
‘I truly believe and hope he can do that. I don’t get excited that often, and I am looking forward to it. It is a great opportunity.’
Fly-half Cipriani will join fellow new arrivals Matt Banahan, Franco Marais and Jaco Kriel at Gloucester next term, while other new signings are set to be announced shortly as the west country club prepare for a European Champions Cup return.