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* Debut: 2002 v NZ
* 1st test v France (first Six nations call up)
* Returns after missing S Africa game in Nov 2002 with glandular fever.
* Outstanding in England v Barbarians game in May 2002 and into England team for 2002 autumn tests. Marked Lomu on test debut.
* Product of Sedbergh School and Gloucester Academy, 3rd season in 1st XV squad with current Premiership leaders. England sevens winner at 2002 Hong Kong event.
James Simpson-Daniel won his ninth cap against Italy last year, having celebrated his initial RBS 6 Nations Championship start with a try against the same opponents four seasons ago. Sedbergh-educated, he was restricted to two caps in the calendar year of 2004, including one against New Zealand that June but scored a try in England’s Churchill Cup games against Canada and Argentina a year later. Fast and elusive, he joined Gloucester six years ago and shared in England’s Sevens success in Hong Kong before enjoying an outstanding ‘non-cap’ match in direct opposition to Jonah Lomu, of the Barbarians. Scored two tries in Gloucester’s Powergen Cup success over Northampton Saints in April 2003 and another for the England XV in the 42-17 victory over the New Zealand Barbarians eight months later. He was unavailable for the 2003 World Cup because of a back injury and had been laid low the previous year with glandular fever that was diagnosed immediately after he had won his second Test cap against Australia. He returned home early from last summer’s tour of Australia through a thigh injury and then underwent a shoulder operation last August.
Did you know?
At 23, James is the second eldest of four highly competitive siblings. Four years his junior, brother Mark is a scrum half, who played for England U19 in 2003-04. Chris, who is three years older, has been among the major influences in James’ life and even today, James wears a sock that Chris gave him every time he plays – even if he forgets to wash it. Sedbergh sports master Neil Rollins made another powerful impression on the fledgling wing at school. James calls him ‘a brilliant coach’. Players he admires include Jonny Wilkinson, Jason Robinson, Carlos Spencer and Thomas Castaignède. Away from the game, he relaxes by playing snooker and is becoming an impressive player. He also part owns a racehorse called Laitrim Rock and is a keen spectator at Cheltenham Races.