England & Leicester prop Dan Cole relishing London Irish challenge

Dan Cole insists his friendship with Alex Corbisiero will be cast aside when Leicester meet London Irish on Sunday

Alex Corbisiero
Alex Corbisiero is set to feature when London Irish take on Leicester on Sunday The Sport Review

Alex Corbisiero

Alex Corbisiero and Dan Cole have spent the last seven weeks turning England’s scrum into a formidable asset which culminated in the dismantling of the Irish eight a week ago at Twickenham.

However, the Leicester prop insists their Six Nations partnership will be forgotten when he goes toe-to-toe with Corbisiero and London Irish at the Madejski this Sunday.

Corbisiero, at 23, and Cole, at 24, were the youngest pair of props to feature in the Six Nations, yet despite their age it was the English scrum which earned all but three of their points in the 30-9 win over Ireland.

And while Cole has great admiration for his American-born team-mate, he revealed that he has picked up a couple of areas where he will look to take on Corbisiero in the Premiership clash.

“Alex and I obviously know each other pretty well after our time with England so I know it’s going to be a good battle,” he said.

“But it’s going to be different now that we are back with our clubs, it’s not just going to be about the scrum but it will be good to go up against him.

“Having spent a lot of time training together we’ve got to know how the other scrummages pretty well.

“He’s been very good with England during the Six Nations so I know it’s going to be tough.

“I’ll try to use what I’ve learned to get the upper hand, but he knows me as well as I know him, so it will be tough.”

While Leicester currently lie in the play-off places, London Irish are in danger of slipping out of Heineken Cup contention.

But despite their recent struggles, Cole insists that his Tigers side will have to be at their best if they are to overcome the Exiles in Reading on Sunday.

“They are playing at home, have some very good backs, and always have a good forward pack,” he added.

“We’ve come back to a Leicester squad which is full confidence after winning the LV= Cup so we have a lot of competition for places.

“But with a play-off place on the line we know we are going to have to be at our best for the remaining games of the season.

“There will be the clash with Alex, but to be honest it’s about the teams and not just the scrum.”

If you buy a ticket for this year’s Aviva Premiership Final on 26 May you will receive a free rugby shirt. Go to www.premiershiprugby.com/freeshirt to buy yours.

© Sportsbeat 2012

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