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Toulon's Armitage in police custody

Armitage has won five England caps. Credit: PA

England rugby international Steffon Armitage is being held in custody at a French police station, his club Toulon have confirmed.

The 29-year-old flanker was taken in for questioning along with team-mate Xavier Chiocci, and should learn later on Thursday whether he is to face charges.

Twenty-four-year-old prop Chiocci was released without charge on Wednesday evening.

It was reported by French media that the pair were held in custody at a police station for several hours and questioned about an alleged attack on a 30-year-old man in December that left him with a severe eye injury.

Rugby Club Toulon learned yesterday that two of its players, namely Steffon Armitage and Xavier Chiocci, had been taken into custody.

Custody of Xavier Chiocci ended on Wednesday night, with no charges brought against him.

Custody of Steffon Armitage was extended during the night, and a decision should be taken on Thursday.

Rugby Club Toulon is awaiting the results of the investigation, and will, if appropriate, take the necessary sanctions to preserve the values that are dear to the club.

– Statement on www.rctoulon.com.

Armitage, the 2014 European Player of the Year, has won five England caps but was not under consideration for the upcoming 6 Nations due to the Rugby Football Union's policy of not selecting overseas-based players.

World Cup winning coach leaves England job

Gary Street was a great success as head coach. Credit: PA

England women's rugby union World Cup-winning head coach Gary Street has left his role.

Street, who spent eight years in charge, won five consecutive Six Nations championships during his tenure.

England's 2014 World Cup victory was the nation's first in 20 years.

Nicky Ponsford will take interim charge during the forthcoming Six Nations.

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England set to call up fly-half Danny Cipriani

Stuart Lancaster will hedge his bets on Danny Cipriani's Test future by naming the Sale fly-half in his extended Six Nations training squad.

Cipriani will be confirmed in England's wider squad on Wednesday to prepare for the Six Nations opener against Wales in Cardiff on February 6, along with Harlequins' 36-year-old back-rower Nick Easter.

Danny Cipriani will return to the England fold. Credit: PA

Cipriani could still, however, officially remain in England's second-string Saxons squad, with George Ford, Owen Farrell and Stephen Myler the senior playmakers.

Easter will earn a first squad call under head coach Lancaster, and has not featured for England since the 2011 World Cup.

Bath's rugby league convert Sam Burgess will be named in the Saxons squad as he continues his quest for a place at this year's World Cup.

Robshaw rejected surgery for Six Nations

England skipper Robshaw couldn't face the prospect of missing the Six Nations. Credit: PA

England captain Chris Robshaw has revealed that his decision not to undergo shoulder surgery was driven by next month's Six Nations Championship opener against Wales in Cardiff.

Robshaw is set to return to action on Saturday when his club Harlequins tackle Aviva Premiership rivals Leicester.

Had Robshaw gone down the surgery route, he would have faced three months out, missing the entire Six Nations campaign.

You don't want to miss out on these occasions, especially going back to the Millennium, you simply don't.

You don't want to be on the sofa watching on TV as everyone else is going into battle. We want to try and rectify what happened there two years ago.

I wanted to be in Cardiff. That was in my mind when I hurt my shoulder. I saw a couple of specialists who went through the options. Once I knew that rest and rehab could do the job, then it was decided to go down that route. You want to be out there playing. Simple as that."

– Chris Robshaw speaking to the Telegraph

Burgess finding code switch tough

English rugby league convert Sam Burgess admitted he was finding the switch to union tougher than expected, with the complexity of lineouts a particular headache.

The hulking Burgess began his union career in late November with English club side Bath as he attempts to fast-track his way into the international fold ahead of a home World Cup in September.

Sam Burgess is hoping to make the England World Cup squad. Credit: PA

"I knew it was going to be tough but I didn't know it was going to be as tough as this," Burgess told Australia's Fox Sports News in an interview released on Monday.

"But I came for the challenge and it certainly delivered that. I've no regrets."

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