Joel Tomkins is preparing for the 2013/14 season eager to prove that he is worthy of a spot in the England set-up.
The Saracens man considers himself unlucky to have missed out on a spot in Stuart Lancaster's touring party to Argentina, after an impressive debut season following his switch from rugby league.
However, his omission has only made the centre more determined to make his mark in the upcoming campaign.
"I was disappointed to miss the tour, it was a blow at the time, but you have to look at the positive side of these things - I get a full pre-season and I can work on a few things I need to work on," he said.
"I think if you start the season well for your club, you put your face in the frame for selection for those autumn internationals and I'm sure everybody who's in and around that environment will have the same goal to try to push their way in.
"There are a few England lads who have gone away with the Lions and then there are the England boys who have been to Argentina - so it's up to people in my position to start well and try and overtake them."
First and foremost the 26-year-old is focused on cementing a spot in the Sarries midfield, starting with a strong showing in pre-season.
"I'm just looking to get some quality work under my belt this pre-season, there has been a great atmosphere so far in our first week back in and I'm looking forward to the beginning of the season," he said.
"Last season was really enjoyable and I owe the coaching staff a lot for that. Mark McCall was brilliant - he was patient and he set out a structured plan for me and I think if you've got that kind of plan and a vision of where you want to be at certain times in the process it's much easier.
"Hopefully I can build on last year, by the end of the season I was playing regular rugby in some really big games and I want to be pushing myself to keep on producing."