Sale winger Chris Ashton has revealed that he “feels like a new player” after being recalled to the England squad, according to a report on BBC Sport.
The 31-year-old only returned back to English rugby recently as he left French side Toulon to play for Premiership side Sale.
He has not represented England since 2014 and was named in a 44-man training squad.
Ashton was in scintillating form last season as he managed to score 24 tries in 23 appearances for Toulon, which is the new top-14 try-scoring record.
When speaking about his recall, Ashton said:
It’s a strange feeling. I feel like a new player and I’m happy to be back in the group. I wasn’t supposed to be back in England. When I went to France I thought that was it for me and I could spend the next few years in France enjoying rugby.
The season went really well and I enjoyed it, but the more the year went on the more I wanted to be back here and back in this environment.
I missed playing for England. It was tough to watch being in England, and I hoped when I moved to France that would go away but it didn’t.
With the World Cup just over a year away, Ashton is eager to force himself into Eddie Jones’ squad for the tournament. The winger admitted that he has been thinking about the tournament and is confident that he can earn a place in the team.