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Saturday, 25 October 2014

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England rugby boss sees Cumbrian star Rob Miller score wonder try

Sale Sharks star Rob Miller could force his way on to the plane for England’s summer tour of South Africa after scoring a stunning try in front of new England supremo and fellow Cumbrian Stuart Lancaster.

Rob Miller try photo
Rob Miller scores

The dynamic young rugby union full-back, from Bothel, admits he couldn’t have chosen a better moment to score a match-winning try, which secured a vital 16-9 win for the Aviva Premiership side.

It was Miller’s 10th try of a superb individual campaign and, with Lancaster planning his 40-man squad for the three Test series in South Africa in June, it opened up the tantalising prospect that Miller could win a shock call-up.

England face a three-Test series against South Africa in June, with games in Durban, Johannesburg and Port Elizabeth.

Miller has played a starring role for Sharks this season following his switch from fly-half to full-back.

Watch the match-winning try. Article continues below...

Lancaster has watched the 22-year-old former Aspatria junior on several occasions this season, suggesting Miller is already on radar to achieve his dream of adding to the string of caps he won at U16, U18 and U20 levels, before playing at the 2010 U20 Junior World Championship in Japan.

Miller, who was called up as cover for England’s Saxons squad earlier this year, believes his stunning progress is down to the fact he is playing in a side filled with exciting young English players who could star on the international stage.

He said: “It was nice to get the try especially with Stuart Lancaster watching.

“In terms of playing for England, I’m obviously ambitious and it’s a target of mine to push on there but at the minute I’m just focused on my week by week progress with Sale and I’ll take things from there.

“It has been an awesome season for me in terms of getting game time and I’m in the same boat as a lot of other young lads like Tom Brady, James Gaskell and Henry Thomas in that we’ve all been lucky enough to play regularly.

“There’s a lot of good young English lads here. We’re all very good mates off the pitch and we work hard and try and encourage each other on and off the pitch.

“I’m really enjoying it at full-back now and my focus is based on playing at 15 and I’m always looking to try and learn from the example of other full-backs.

“Playing there maybe suits my strengths and allows me to use my pace and join in the back line where possible so I do see myself as a full-back now.”

Miller, whose dad Jimmy was the Cumbria backs coach when they won the 1997 County Championship against Somerset at Twickenham, began his professional career with Newcastle Falcons after joining their academy while he was still at Keswick School.

After finding his route to the Falcons first team blocked by Jimmy Gopperth, he moved to Sale two years ago.

But it was his switch to full-back this season by Sale chief Steve Diamond that transformed his career and has seen him emerge as a future England player.

He has played more games than any other Sale player and is thriving at a club which includes two fellow Cumbrians in wing Mark Cueto and centre Will Addison.

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