Harry Ellis has promised there will be no renewed eruption of hostilities with French scrum-half Dimitri Yachvili when he makes his first start for England in the RBS 6 Nations at Twickenham on Sunday.
The announcement Ellis had been preferred to World Cup winner Matt Dawson by head coach Andy Robinson came just an hour after Yachvili was recalled to the French side at the expense of Pierre Magnoni, who disappointed against Scotland last weekend.
That means a quick rematch for the pair who clashed in Leicester's recent European Cup tie with Biarritz when Ellis was yellow-carded for aiming an elbow at the Frenchman.
But 22-year-old Ellis insisted: "That's in the past. He was playing for Biarritz and I was playing for Leicester. I'm playing for England now and he's playing for France.
"Obviously we are both very committed players but I'm just looking forward to playing opposite him at the weekend."
Ellis maintained he would try to conduct any future rivalry within the jurisdiction of the referee.
"Rivalry is good, it's a competitive sport. I'm not going to change the way I play but I'll perhaps be a bit cleverer in the way that I play at times and work with the referees, and we'll go from there.
"Every scrum-half always puts you under pressure, it's how you deal with it that matters," he added.
Last year Yachvili sank England with a personal haul of 19 points - a try, conversion and four penalties - in France's 24-21 victory in Paris and Ellis had no doubts about the quality of his direct opponent.
"Dimitri is a very talented player. He's typically French in so many things he does. He is very unpredictable, he's got a good passing game and a good kicking game.
"I've been analysing the way he plays this week and I look forward to raising my game to play against him," added Ellis.
Ellis admitted that 14 months ago, in the aftermath of England's World Cup triumph, he could not envisage he would have leapfrogged Dawson, Andy Gomarsall and Kyran Bracken, now retired from international rugby, in the pecking order for the number nine shirt.
But it is something he has waited a long time for: "Pretty much all my life really," he said.
Peter O'Mahony was named man of the match against England last month
21 April 2017, 7:22pm
Peter O'Mahony's performance in the RBS 6 Nations finale for Ireland against England was crucial to his selection for the British & Irish Lions on Wednesday, Ireland and Lions defence coach Andy Farrell has revealed.