Critics 'fuelled' England win

2012-12-01 22:13

London - England captain Chris Robshaw said the criticism the team had received following defeats by Australia and South Africa spurred them on to a record-breaking 38-21 victory over world champions New Zealand.

Saturday's Twickenham success was England's first win over the All Blacks in nine years and their largest margin of victory over New Zealand, surpassing the 13 point gap achieved in a 13-0 win back in 1936.

This victory also ended New Zealand's 20-match unbeaten run.

Robshaw, much criticised for his decision to go for goal with a late penalty against the Springboks, rather than opt for an attacking lineout that could have led to a match-winning try, was understandably delighted after what was only England's seventh win in 35 Tests against New Zealand dating back to 1905.

"People had written us off," Robshaw told Sky Sports.

"That fuelled the fire. Everyone ran out there and believed we could do it," the Harlequins openside flanker insisted.

He added: "We had a bit of luck. We had the bounce of the ball but to beat the world champions you need a bit of that."

Man-of-the-match Tom Wood, a colleague of Robshaw in an England back-row that excelled themselves against their New Zealand counterparts, said: "This is an absolutely brilliant day. We put our hearts and souls into that."

England had been criticised in the build-up to this match for being too predictable up front and lacking a cutting edged behind the scrum.

But three second-half tries from backs Brad Barritt, Manu Tuilagi and Chris Ashton, saw England simultaneously stun and delight a capacity Twickenham crowd of more than 81 000.

England coach Stuart Lancaster, asked what pleased him most about his youthful side's performance, said: "The way we mixed up our game. The scrum was good. The defence was outstanding."

His New Zealand counterpart, Steve Hansen, praised England's victory by saying: "I'd just like to congratulate England on a tremendous performance.

"They thoroughly deserved their victory and they should be very proud of what they've achieved. I thought they played some magnificent football."

He added: "To my own side, I'm very proud of what they've achieved. I know we've fallen over today, but once we get over the disappointment the boys should sit back and reflect on what they've done and done very well."


  • bernard.mackenzie.5 - 2012-12-02 00:28

    As South Africans, some of us love to criticize England. But they are a tough, bloody-minded bunch and I have huge admiration for them. Excellent win by England. Rugby needs a competitive British/Irish side and England stepped up today. I know he made mistakes last week but Chris Robshaw, the captain, has all the hallmarks of great leader. Watch out for thus team in 2015.

      vark.nek.90 - 2012-12-02 09:55

      Flash in the pan. Watch the Boks in 2015. Only reason I cheered for the whiners (1st time in my life), is that the AB's needed to be knocked of their perch by a crappy team.

      Flemstone - 2012-12-02 10:41

      Less than 4% predicted this win on superbru. All these guys play great rugby for their clubs. SA has got slightly better forwards. England has a superior backline. I'm so glad they decided to use theirs.Then again the England forwards smashed NZ. World cup and six nations winners cannot be a crappy team. SA only had a draw and a 1 point win in the last two encounters. What does that say about the Boks Vark?

      wade.johnson.58726 - 2012-12-02 20:44

      Everybody's now suggesting that England could be a threat in 2015 ? I think people need to recognize that they've only won 50% of their matches this year. Sure, they were good against NZ, but NZ weren't their usual selves. If England had lost against NZ, then it would have been a pretty poor year for them, but now that they won, suddenly everyone thinks they're amazing. England will only be taken seriously if they win a couple times on tour in SA; AUZ or NZ.

      mark.knight.14418 - 2012-12-03 01:00

      Phlegmstone, the Boks beat the English three times out of four this season and the other match was a draw. That says that the Boks are better than England. Logical, yes?

      Flemstone - 2012-12-03 11:23

      Just call me Flem if you like, its been my nickname for well over 2 decades. Yes the Boks are slightly better than England. The point is that SA is quite far behind Australia and NZ. And even struggled against Wales and Argentina recently. England is a very young side, and have made huge changes. SA is going through the same process. The only problem is coaching style. SA is still in the dark ages, where England is playing progressive rugby. Just look at Goode and Brown running the ball back instead of kicking. Lovely stuff.

  • craig.king.7505 - 2012-12-02 07:04

    It was a thrilling and exciting game. The English defence was really solid and the opportunities taken by the offense were often brilliant. I am looking forward to 2015.

  • ockie.barnard.9 - 2012-12-02 08:52

    It was a great performance by England and a great game to watch. They outplayed the AB in all aspects. Strong and aggressive play upfront and Barrett and Tuilagi was a handful at the back. England was highly motivated and their defence was proof of this. Good for rugby if more teams are stepping up. Another team to watch out for in future is Samoa.

      vark.nek.90 - 2012-12-02 09:48

      Barrett and Tuilagi were definitely not a handful for the Boks.

  • Felix.gumbi1 - 2012-12-02 09:40

    Conrad Smith missing tackles,must be the suzie effect,I doupt the AB were 100 percent,for once Aaron Smith had a bad game ''his worst I reckon'',but those are dangerouse centres England have put together,welldone to England!

  • nervern - 2012-12-02 10:49

    If England can back up this win by winning the 6 nations and get one more win over a Southern hemisphere side then we might have to start wowi guys. Mixing that natural arrogance actual guts and talent= problems for us in the south.

      wade.johnson.58726 - 2012-12-02 20:53

      Problem is that England hardly ever win when touring the Southern hemisphere. England have only won 3 times in South Africa; 3 times in Auz & twice in NZ, EVER !!

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