England an 'inspired' team

Mon, 11 Feb 2013 13:24
Large stuart lancaster   chris ro Large england v ireland Large owen farrell england thumbs

England coach Stuart Lancaster was delighted by the maturity of his youthful side after they emerged from a brutal encounter in Dublin.

England coach Stuart Lancaster was delighted by the maturity of his youthful side after they emerged from a brutal encounter in Dublin as the only side in this season's Six Nations who can win a Grand Slam.

Chris Robshaw, the England captain, led from the front at the breakdown while 21-year-old flyhalf Owen Farrell also did his chances of selection for the British and Irish Lions' tour of Australia no harm by kicking all of the visitors' points in a 12-6 win over Ireland.

England's first Six Nations success in the Irish capital for a decade was achieved against a backdrop of constant rain that negated the running game favoured by both sides.

But whereas their record-breaking 38-21 win over world champions New Zealand at Twickenham in December witnessed three England tries in a match few expected them to win, Sunday's success saw the visitors grind out victory, with Farrell kicking four penalties to two from Ireland replacement Ronan O'Gara.

However, both successes saw England overcome a rally by their opponents, with England staving off an Ireland third quarter fightback on Sunday.

"It is very difficult to play rugby against experienced players when we have lads on single figures in terms of caps, it is great testament to their maturity," said Lancaster.

"As a test of character it was right up there because of the quality of the Ireland side and the ability to get the win."

England's defence rarely looked like being breached and they turned round 6-0 in front before O'Gara, on for the injured Jonathan Sexton, drew Ireland level.

But despite being a man down after James Haskell was sin-binned, England outscored Ireland 6-3 in the 10 minutes the blindside flanker was off the field.

"It's a huge win because we came up against an Ireland team on a day which was made for players likes Ronan O'Gara and Brian O'Driscoll and they have the nous to win on such days and get through such conditions," said England assistant coach Andy Farrell, the father of Owen.

"There was a tricky point in the third quarter but the way we composed ourselves and finished the game - our energy got better, our line speed got better, our composure - was a masterclass of how to handle that last 20 minutes," the former dual code international added.

Haskell, playing his first Six Nations match since England were denied a Grand Slam in Dublin two years ago, admitted he feared the worst when shown a yellow card by French referee Jerome Garces for kicking the ball out of a ruck.

"I think my life probably flashed before my eyes," Haskell said. "I thought if we lost the game I would have to run straight out of the stadium.

"I didn't intentionally kick it but it was the third penalty in a row and someone was going to get it. The fact we won that period is credit to those on the field."

AFP

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 24 March 2017
Crusaders v Force 06h35 Christchurch
Rebels v Waratahs 08h45 Melbourne
Glasgow Warriors v Connacht 17h15 Scotstoun Stadium
Scarlets v Edinburgh 19h05 Parc y Scarlets
Treviso v Ospreys 19h35 Stadio Monigo
Dragons v Ulster 19h35 Rodney Parade
Sat, 25 March 2017
Blues v Bulls 06h35 Eden Park
Brumbies v Highlanders 08h45 Canberra
Sunwolves v Stormers 10h55 Singapore
Kings v Lions 13h05 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Zebre v Munster 14h00 Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
Harlequins v Newcastle Falcons 15h00 Twickenham Stoop
Saracens v Bath 15h00 Allianz Park
Leinster v Cardiff Blues 15h00 RDS Arena
Northampton Saints v Leicester Tigers 15h00 Franklin's Gardens
Exeter Chiefs v Sale Sharks 15h00 Sandy Park
Cheetahs v Sharks 15h15 Bloemfontein
Treviso v Ospreys 19h35 Stadio Monigo
Jaguares v Reds 21h40 Buenos Aires
Sun, 26 March 2017
Wasps v Worcester Warriors 14h30 Ricoh Arena
Bristol v Gloucester 15h00 Ashton Gate
Mon, 27 March 2017
NWU-Pukke v UP-Tuks 14h45 Potchefstroom
Fort Hare v UKZN-Impi 16h30 Davidson Stadium
Wits v UCT-Ikeys 16h30 Johannesburg
NMMU-Madibaz v CUT-Ixias 16h30 Bloemfontein
UWC v WSU 16h30 Cape Town
Maties v UJ 17h00 Stellenbosch
SIX NATIONS
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
England 5 4 0 1 19
Ireland 5 3 0 2 14
France 5 3 0 2 14
Scotland 5 3 0 2 14
Wales 5 2 0 3 10
Italy 5 0 0 5 0