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Wade relishing England opportunity

We caught up with Christian Wade this week as he prepares with England to take on the Barbarians this Sunday.

Wade is having an exciting end to his Club season having been named the Computacenter Players’ Player of the Year and the LV= Young Player of the Year this week to add to his Aviva Premiership Top Try Scorer award and his Wasps Players Player of the Year accolade.

Wade says he was shocked to pick up two awards at the RPA end of season dinner last night.

“I’m actually quite shocked to be honest. Looking at those nominated, I wasn’t expecting anything really. There was such strong competition so for me to come out on top is a huge surprise to me but I am humbled at the same time and obviously want to give a huge thanks to the coaches and players at Wasps for everything they have done for me this season.”

He is loving his week with England as he looks ahead to hopefully playing a role in the first game of the summer tour this weekend.

“We are settling in well. We started to look at our attacking structure and then our defence so after those two days we will have laid some good foundations. Being in camp, it’s about learning quickly because we have little time together. I am really looking forward the rest of the week and then preparing mentally for the Barbarians game.”

Looking ahead to the summer, Wade says he hopes to leave a real mark on the coaches for future selection.

“With a young squad it’s a great opportunity for lots of players to come in and stick their hands up. I know Stuart wants to bring strength and depth to his squad so he has options in all areas across the board and creating more competition as well will only strengthen England as a team. It is going to be a great opportunity for us to go out there and show what we can do and make that step up from club level to the international stage.”

After Sunday’s game England head to Argentina, a country Wade knows all about.

“I’ve been to Argentina before and I know that they’re a passionate side with some excellent players. It’s going to be tough time when we go down there so we are going to need to bring our A game. When I played in the U20s Junior World Cup over there a few years ago we had Argentina as our first pool match and we had the biggest crowd for that game. It was a sell out and they were going crazy for their team in the stands. It was a great experience and I’m expecting more of the same so I am really looking forward to it.”

This weekend, Wade could come up against some of his Wasps teammates in the Barbarians plus his Director of Rugby Dai Young who will lead the side.

“I don’t think I’ve had to play against my team mates at any level so it will be a bit strange playing against them but it’s a new challenge and the Barbarians have got an awesome squad.”

“There could be up to six Wasps players on the pitch which is great for Dai and our Club. I think that shows the quality and the young talent we have over at Wasps and with Dai nurturing that as well - it is a great way to finish off the season in England. We have some great young players at Wasps and hopefully a few of us will be on the field at the same time. We will all develop as players over the summer and will be able to take that back to Wasps for next season.”