Warren Gatland: Wales can't afford to give England fast start again

Warren Gatland: Wales can't afford to give England fast start again

Warren Gatland: Wales can't afford to give England fast start again

Itoje sustained the injury in the opening-weekend win over Ireland and missed the rout of France a week later amid a prognosis the Saracens lock would return for the later rounds of the championship.

There's not much between the teams over the course of history: in their 131 games played, England have won 62, Wales 57, and 12 have been drawn.

England have beaten Wales in their last five championship matchups, thanks to being smarter, more composed, and more decisive.

Two years ago in Cardiff England's bus went the wrong way on approach to the Principality Stadium, delaying their warm-up, and in 2015 Chris Robshaw memorably stood his ground in the tunnel as stadium officials attempted to send his side out on to the pitch early and leave them waiting around.

"We are really happy with the experience we have got in the side", said Gatland. "We're working very hard to counteract what we think England are going to bring to us, they're going to have to cope with our threats too. It's a big game, but it's not the biggest game we've played in", he said, while teeing up his final joke.

"We have had a good week just focussing on ourselves and focussing on getting our preparation right". "As you have read in the media, it's all about Wales, we are playing potentially the greatest team ever", Jones said, referencing Wales' 11-match winning run. "It's a big game, but it's not the biggest game we've played in".

This attacking kicking game was used to incredible effect in Paris, as England ruthlessly exploited France's makeshift back three to race into a 30-8 half-time lead, wing Johnny May running in a first-half hat-trick. Howley urged Wales to start well and make their fans sing.

Wales' triumphs in 1908 and 1909, although won during the Home Nations era, were the first Grand Slams as they defeated France in both seasons. He'll be marked by George North, who is bigger but not faster. Josh Adams, 10. Gareth Anscombe, 9. Gareth Davies starts at scrum-half with Tomos Williams ruled out through injury.

Replacements: 16. Elliot Dee, 17. Adam Beard, 20. Aaron Wainwright, 21.

Subs: 16 Niall Scannell, 17 Jack McGrath, 18 John Ryan, 19 John Ryan, 20 Josh van der Flier, 21 John Cooney, 22 Jack Carty, 23 Andrew Conway.

England Starting XV: 15.

France - 15 Thomas Ramos, 14 Damian Penaud, 13 Mathieu Bastareaud, 12 Gaël Fickou, 11 Yoann Huget, 10 Romain Ntamack, 9 Antoine Dupont, 8 Louis Picamoles, 7 Arthur Iturria, 6 Wenceslas Lauret, 5 Félix Lambey, 4 Sébastien Vahaamahina, 3 Demba Bamba, 2 Guilhem Guirado (c), 1 Jefferson Poirot. The halfback's box kick was regathered, and a grubber kick by the inspirational Owen Farrell found Jonny May on the end.

Called England prop Kyle Sinckler a "timebomb" whose temperament was suspect.

Related news



[an error occurred while processing the directive]