Alex Lozowski is convinced he still has a bright future with England as he continues to come to terms with his exclusion from Eddie Jones’ World Cup plans.
Lozowski was omitted from the 35-man training squad named last week and will be absent when Jones reveals his final 31 for Japan 2019 on August 12, although he has been placed on standby in the event of injury.
The Saracens centre was superb in the decisive phase of last season’s domestic and European double, but his form failed to change Jones’ thinking.
“I didn’t react very well to it. It still burns now really – walking around knowing you were pretty close but not quite chosen,” Lozowski said.
“It’s probably the most disappointing selection decision of my career. It’s tough to take but you have to crack on with it. There are games after the World Cup when there is more rugby to be played.
“I don’t believe I’m done with England and I think I have plenty to offer and can make a difference to the team. Hopefully the best is still to come.
“If that’s not now at this World Cup then so be it, but there are more England games down the road and I’m determined to get back into the fold and show what I can do.
“Hopefully I can use this darkness that I’m carrying around with me at the moment. It’s difficult to deal with, but hopefully I can use it to come back a better player.”
Lozowski has been limited to five caps since making his debut against Argentina two years ago due to Henry Slade taking ownership of outside centre and Ben Te’o and Manu Tuilagi also being viewed as better options at 13.
“Eddie rang me and told me I’d just missed out,” Lozowski said.
“It was probably a similar message to what one or two of the other players got – you’re just one away or two away, so make sure you’re ready because something might happen.
“I can’t keep moping around like I was on holiday, feeling sorry for myself. I’m back in training now and getting ready for whatever comes.
“I need to show Eddie what he wants to see. There have been consistent messages from Eddie on what I need to do and I’ve been trying to do those things.
“At the end of the season I think I showed I can do those things, but perhaps it was too little, too late.”