Over-confidence damaged Vunipola

Date published: December 15 2014

Saracens number eight Billy Vunipola has admitted to getting ‘carried away’ with his good form with England in November.

Vunipola lost his England number eight shirt to Ben Morgan, who finished with three tries over four matches against New Zealand, South Africa, Samoa and Australia.

Vunipola was left out of England’s matchday squads entirely for the final two Tests after two error-strewn performances.

Opening up on the reasons for his recent dip in fortune with the national side, the 22-year-old was a scorer in Saracens’ Champions Cup win over Sale last weekend and is now looking ahead.

“November was certainly a massively frustrating time for me but at the same time it was also a huge learning curve,” said Vunipola.

“I think heading into November I maybe got carried away with my form for Sarries and maybe I was just a bit too over-confident in myself, not necessarily on the pitch but perhaps more off it with my religion and faith and everything.

“But maybe being dropped will actually benefit me and turn out to be a good thing because I have learned so much off the back of it.

“I have never been in a situation like that, just for whatever reason I couldn’t transfer my club form over to my country, but sometimes it goes like that and you need to get back on the horse and I am excited about doing that.

“I am still learning and I have a long way to go but I am determined to win back my place and I will do all I can to do exactly that.

“Ben is a very good player and he showed that last month and it is great that we can push each other on.

“We both want to play but only one can so we will both be trying our hardest to make sure we are the ones with the shirt in time for the Six Nations.”